Cyclists in Los Angeles have long claimed that it is a dangerous city for them, whether it is because of the aggressive motorists or high number of pedestrians and other cyclists. A recent study from the University of Michigan Transportation has confirmed their suspicions, according to the Los Angeles Times.
According to the study, 2.8 percent of victims in traffic fatalities in Los Angeles are cyclists. This is nearly double the national average. Earlier this year, Governor Jerry Brown vetoed a bill that would have forced all motorists to give cyclists a three feet buffer zone when passing.
“Drivers don’t look for bikes and we are almost invisible,” says South Pasadena cyclist Bill Sherman, who was recently hit by a car when he was attempting to make a left turn. It was the second time he has been hit. “I think when you talk to bike riders, everybody has had an accident or been threatened with an accident.”
A study like this is good news for cyclists, because it gives a validation to their arguments and shines a light on a problem. Legislators must take note of this very real and dangerous problem in Los Angeles. Michael Sivak noted that a dense urban population may contribute to the increased rate of fatalities for cyclists.
“In large cities there is more pedestrian (and bicycle) traffic and more pedestrian car interactions just because of there are more people on the road,” said Sivak.
According to the California Office of Traffic, there were 4,191 cyclists killed or injured after an accident with a vehicles in Los Angeles in 2010. There were 12,763 fatalities across the state for the year, making California one of the most dangerous states for cyclists in the country.
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