Toronto leads the country in bike-on-car collisions—wait, really?

Toronto leads the country in bike-on-car collisions—wait, really?

Cycling in Toronto (Image: Commodore Gandalf Cunningham) 

The city recently released a report about last year’s data on cyclist collisions with cars and pedestrians, and the statistics are surprisingly grim. The data reveals that Toronto leads the country’s biggest cities in cyclist collisions, which we find more than a little bizarre. Usually, as more and more cyclists populate a city’s streets, the accident rate drops, not rises (New York and Minneapolis are but two examples). The reason is simple: as cyclists become a predictable part of the local traffic environs, they’re in less danger of being run over. Except, apparently, in Toronto.

From the National Post:

As Toronto gears up for a debate over physically separated bike lanes, new sobering statistics show the city has among the highest rates of cyclist collisions in the country.

The rate of pedestrians colliding with vehicles also tops a chart of major Canadian cities, according to recently released statistics by the city. Data for all cities was not available.

There is a number of theories on why this is the case, but what’s important is how this information informs the upcoming debates over Rob Ford’s cycling plan. We’re particularly interested in what the implications will be for the curb-separated bike lane system that car-loving councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong wants to build.

Toronto has country’s highest rate of car collisions with bikes, pedestrians [National Post]
2010 Cyclist Collision Summary []