Bicycling is a sustainable and affordable method of transport.
Bicycles require less to be spent on road infrastructure than heavier, larger vehicles. Owning a bicycle significantly improves the opportunities for education and employment of people on low incomes, particularly in rural areas of low income countries (Bicycle Empowerment Network, Bicycle reference manual for developing countries). In higher income countries cycling is an environmentally friendly and healthy activity.
However, cyclists are amongst the most vulnerable of all road users. In some countries where cycles are a primary mode of transport, cyclist death and injury can form a significant component of all casualties. The severity of cyclist crashes is often much higher than passenger or heavy vehicle crashes in similar situations, due to lack of physical protection.
The level of risk experienced by cyclists is related to the following contributory factors
• Interaction with larger vehicles (cars, trucks and buses)
• Road surface issues (such as roughness, potholes or debris on the road)
• Speed environment – both for cyclists and other vehicles
• Road design and traffic management
• Inadequate physical separation from traffic
• Other obstructions on the road.
The severity of cyclist crashes is strongly dependent on the speed of traffic. Research shows that the chances of a cyclist surviving an impact with a motorised vehicle reduces dramatically above 30 km/h, and even at lower speeds than this, serious harm can be caused, especially to elderly or child cyclists.
In many places brakes and a bell are required for a bicycle to be ridden on the road (WHO World report on road traffic injury prevention). Bells are useful to alert other road users to the presence of a bicycle, and can help avoid collisions with other non-motorised road users. Many also require that the bicycle has front and rear reflectors, and sometimes battery powered front and rear lights if the bicycle is to be ridden after dark (Bicycle Laws and Penalties – RTA Centre for Road Safety). Wearing a helmet is also often required (Treatments\Safe People\Helmet and Protective clothing ).
To reduce the risk of falls and collisions, bicycle riders should be encouraged and educated to
• Wear appropriate safety clothing and helmets
• Use designated cycle routes, tracks and lanes where available
• Keep tube tyres inflated to the pressure printed on the side of the tyre
• Ensure wheels are properly tightened to the frame of the bicycle and spokes are not broken
• Ensure that brakes are in good working order – this can be checked by applying the brakes while walking the bike
• Keep the chain oiled to slow down wear and reduce the likelihood of it breaking.
Well designed cyclist training courses with on-road components can also be effective (RoSPA road safety advice- Cycling).
In many developing countries, there are few skilled repairers, and repairs are rarely made with the correct spare parts (Bicycle reference manual for developing countries). Therefore, programs such as the Bicycle Empowerment Network, which imports recycled bicycles and also trains people to become bicycle repairers are of value.
Further information on bicycle safety can be found at the FHWA’s BIKESAFE website (BIKESAFE – The Bicycle Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System). This is an online resource providing practitioners with up-to-date information about how to improve the safety and mobility of cyclists within the
Case Studies related to Road Users
|Related Case Studies||Project Leads||Description|
|Evaluation of Wide Centreline Treatment Effectiveness||Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads||Wide centrelines increase separation of opposing traffic with painted lines up to 1 metre wide, often accompanied by audio-tactile linemarking. The Queensland Department of Transport and Main Roads implemented this treatment on selected sections of the Bruce Highway in 2011. This evaluation found that head on fatalities and serious injuries reduced by 30% and run off road fatalities and serious injuries reduced by 24%.|
|Final evaluation of 80 km/h speed limit on single carriageway roads outside built-up areas in France||Cerema||To support a national target of a 50% reduction in road fatalities, speed limits on two-way rural roads with
no central separator in mainland France. The initiative resulted in significant reductions in serious trauma and overall socio-economic benefits of more than EUR 700 million per year.
|Forming a Coalition to Bring Attention to E-Bike Regulation in||Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP)||To help bring awareness and attention on the need for e-bike regulation, road safety advocates created the Tianjin Road Safety Alliance. Tactics in this Case Study include: engaging traditional media through awareness events, hosting joint media events and walk-a-thons, as well as, gathering and sharing data within a coalition.|
|Fortaleza Cares: Prioritizing Safer Access to Albert Sabin Children’s Hospital||Albert Sabin Children’s Hospital, Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS), NACTO-GDCI, World Resources Institute (WRI)||Transforming the safety of the streets surrounding the hospital. This area, in Fortaleza, Brazil, is now equipped with safe pedestrian infrastructure that has reduced the number of people walking on the roadbed by 86%, and greatly improved accessibility to the hospital.|
|From Legislation to Implementation in Cambodia||Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP)||In late 2014, after several years of discussion between advocates and the government, the Cambodian government passed comprehensive road traffic legislation. Tactics in this Case Study include: fostering partnerships, coordinating with other road safety activists, working closely with the government to commit funds for implementation, and conducting trainings and workshops on road safety.|
|Generic case of selecting sites for 2+1 with median barrier Road 4, south west of Debrecen – Ukraine border||EuroRAP||This case study has shown how iRAP Star Rating maps, Safer Roads Investment Plans (SRIPs) and tools within the iRAP software platform ViDA maps may be used to guide site selection for 2+1 roads with median barrier in Hungary.|
|Head First: A Case Study of Vietnam’s Motorcycle Helmet Campaign||Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation, Government of Vietnam||Published to coincide with the 10th anniversary of Vietnam’s 2007 introduction of a universal helmet law, ‘Head First’ details the decade-long campaign to secure the legislations, and the decade-long implementation effort since.|
|High Friction Surfacing Treatment (HFST) Crash Reduction Program||Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC)||High Friction Surfacing Treatment (HFST) Program in Kentucky is one of the 2013 winners of The Annual National Roadway Safety Awards. Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) conducted a pilot program to improve skid resistance using high friction surfacing treatment (HFST) at 26 locations prone to run-off crashes. The pilot program showed a 69% reduction in skid-related roadway departure crashes and lead to a statewide roll-out of the program covering 75 locations. Comparing the crashes in 3-years post treatment to previous 3-years, in wet-weather, roadway departure crashes dropped from 357 to 33 at sites where HFST has been applied and similarly, in dry-weather, crashes dropped from 126 to 28.|
|Human lives need not be lost in road crashes—much less at current levels||Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS), Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF), Government of Karnataka, World Bank||The project supported the adoption of a whole-of-government programmatic approach to road safety, with activities focused on every stage: policy, planning, design, construction, and operation. The results have been striking: fatalities and injuries along the Belagavi – Yaragatti (62 km) State Highway corridor, that piloted the approach, were reduced by more than 50%. Approximately $9 million was invested, including approximately $6 million wo for safer infrastructure (~($100,000/km).|
|Illustrations of roads improved with safer infrastructure||World Bank||Illustrations with example images showing before and after Star Ratings of state highways in Gujarat and Kerala improved with safer infrastructure.|
|Impact of reduction of posted speed limits||Cumming School of Medicine University of Calgary||Speed reduction, pedestrians|
|Implementing Road Safety Engineering Measures in Ho Chi Minh City||Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS)||This case study describes the upgrades implemented on the city roads of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam which were assessed by iRAP under the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS). Based on iRAP and BIGRS partners recommendations, the local administration has implemented over 300 road safety engineering measures such as refuge islands, raised pedestrian crossings, footbridges etc.|
|Improved Line Marking and Rumble Strips||New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA)||A 3-E’s (Education, Engineering & Enforcement) approach was undertaken to address the crashes on State Highway 1 in New Zealand. Engineering treatments such as 150mm double yellow profiled centreline marking, 150mm edgeline marking and 150mm wide ribs immediately outside of the edgeline were implemented on a 37km section out of the entire 200km project road. Fatal and serious injury crashes on this 37km section dropped by 67% after implementation of these measures…|
|Improved Pedestrian Facilities Around Ied Rodrigo Lara Bonilla||Bogota Mobility Secretariat||In 2018, as part of the city’s Vision Zero approach, the Bogota Mobility Secretariat launched their 2,000th safe school zone, around the IED Rodrigo Lara Bonilla Public School in Ciudad Bolivar.As part of the Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS), in partnership with the World Bank Global Road Safety Facility and NACTO-GDCI, the Mobility Secretariat started a pilot project in the area. The countermeasures were first tested with temporary materials to verify their impact. Cones and plants were introduced…|
|Improved Pedestrian Facilities At Shohada, Imam Ali & Azmoodeh Primary Schools||Global Alliance of NGOs, Road Safety Pioneers||Assessments were conducted around eight primary schools in Tehran and Mashhad using the SR4S app. Three schools were found to have a 1-star safety rating and were selected for the implementation of safety treatments. Treatments included the installation of delineation, speed bumps, road studs and an on-road thermoplastic school sign. SR4S was again used to assess the school zones post-construction. The result was an improvement to 3-stars for the Shohada School, 4-stars for the Imam Ali School and 2-stars for the Azmoodeh School.|
|Improving road safety through speed management in Accra||Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS)||With the support of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIRGS) 2015-2019, pedestrian footbridges, new speed limits, crosswalks, and installation of traffic lights were completed in an effort to make roads safer in Ghana. The BIGRS initiative surveyed and assessed 260 km of roads in In Accra; completed 74 km of construction based on iRAP survey recommendations; trained 164 professionals on road safety; which could prevent over 5,243 potential deaths and serious injuries over 20 years|
|Improving road safety through speed management in Bogotá||Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS), City of Bogotá, Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF), iRAP||In Bogotá, a network of approximately 200 km of roads has been assessed for road safety risks in the BIGRS program. The results show that over 40% of this network has an iRAP star rating of 1 or 2 for bicyclists, and over 60% is 1 or 2 stars for pedestrians. Scenarios tested using iRAP, along with input from the BIGRS partnership, showed significant safety benefits from reducing the speed limit from 60 to 50 km/h in key arterial roads…|
|Increasing Road Safety in Argentina||Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF)||A $38.5 million road safety initiative was launched in Argentina by the World Bank to reduce road traffic injuries, crashes and fatalities. The components of the initiative include institutional capacity-building, demonstration corridors with incentive fund program and road safety monitoring and evaluation. The initiative helped to achieve 35% reduction of fatalities in selected pilot corridors, 12% reduction in the national road traffic death rate, increase in seat belt and helmet usage rates etc.|
|Increasing Road Safety Investments in Addis Ababa||Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF)||GRSF funded iRAP assessment of Tulu Dimtu – Kality Interchange Road in Ethiopia led to led to an investment of $17.5 million in interventions. Each $1 of GRSF investment resulted in $80 additional for road safety in Addis Ababa.|
|Intersection speed zones||New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA)||Intersection Speed Zones are used to improve the safety at rural intersections along high-speed roads. They detect when a driver is approaching on a side road and activate an electronic Variable Speed Limit sign to temporarily show a lower speed limit on the main road. Looking at the ten sites installed in the first trial, in the years after installation compared to the five years before: total crashes reduced by 28%; fatal and serious crashes reduced by 69%.|
|Kazakhstan Safe Villages and Education||EASST, European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)||In July 2016, in conjunction with the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development’s South West Corridor Road Rehabilitation Project in the Martuk region of Aktobe, Kazakhstan, EASST Expertise consultants delivered a Safe Villages and Education Campaign in the local area where road improvement works had taken place.|
|Kwapda’as Road Safety Demand Trust||Kwapda’as Road Safety Demand Trust||Kwapda’as Road Safety Demand Trust (KRSD Trust), with the support of iRAP and the Global Alliance of NGOs for Road Safety, has been working with the school and community leaders to improve road safety. The work of KRSD Trust and iRAP Star Rating for Schools to improve road safety for Lea Primary School students has been profiled in a moving video|
|Kyrgyzstan, Safe and Sustainable Streets||EASST||A targeted campaign was implemented between May-September to inform and urge the public to use seat belts and child car seats. The results revealed an increase in the number of drivers and front passengers choosing a safe ride by buckling up, and a significant increase (160% from the baseline) in the use of seat belts in the back seat|
|Maintenance and basic improvements to SS 51 di Alemagna||EuroRAP||The case study shows a reduction in risk after implementation of maintenance and some additional measures added during that process.|
|Maintenance improvements to road sections of A6, A8, A9, D8||EuroRAP||iRAP assessment results of selected Croatian TEN-T roads are presented in this case study. The study shows that implementation of maintenance-only remedies such as delineation improvement, clearance of roadside hazards or replacement/modification/installation of roadside barriers improved the Star Rating by 1 to 2 stars.|
|Making Vehicle Inspections Count in Cameroon||Global Road Safety Facility (GRSF)||The Assessment of Vehicle Inspection Systems (AVIS) project is undertaken by GRSF and CITA with a view to upgrade vehicle inspections. The main objective of the project is to identify systems for vehicle inspection and approval, and to propose an improvement strategy to make vehicles safer and travel more efficient. Global objective of the AVIS projects is to carry out audits of vehicle inspection systems in various countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Cameroon is the second country to benefit from such an audit.|
|Mehsana – Himmatnagar State Highway-55 in Gujarat||World Bank||This case study presents the improvement in Star Rating after upgradation of Mehsana – Himmatnagar State Highway in Gujarat, India. Treatments such as Duplication (2 to 4 laning), median safety barriers, intersection improvements, pedestrian crossing facilities, curve delineation etc. were implemented.|
|Mexico’s National Network||Secretariat for Communications and Transport (SCT)||Mexico systematically Star Rated their road network in 2012, investing millions of pesos in iRAP recommended road upgrades.They resurveyed the network in 2015 to evaluate the success of their investment. The results highlighted that 17% of the 42,801km road network was lifted from only a 1 or 2-star level to 3-star or better.|
|More schools in Mogale City to benefit from road safety project||South African Road Federation (SARF)||Working with our partners, we developed a Road Safety Risk Assessment Model, which includes a Road Safety Risk Index, to prioritise schools where the risk for accidents is high. We made use of the Star Rating for Schools (SR4S) App to measure the road environment, road type, road features, school zone, sidewalks, crossings, flow of vehicles and pedestrians as well as intersections. To measure speed around the schools, we used a hand-held speed gun. Using these tools, we undertook a risk assessment of 50 schools in Mogale City. Those with the highest road safety risk were selected for the project. These included Athlolong primary school, Lengau primary school, Mosupatsela secondary school, Tsholetsega public school, WD Oliphant primary school and Bosele intermediary school. For each school, we looked at a surrounding radius of roughly one kilometre because some children have to cross major roads to get to school. Infrastructure, signage and road markings were also considered. Then, we implemented infrastructure upgrades and speed reduction tactics. These interventions took place alongside road safety education, law enforcement and data management. We also aimed to eliminate hazardous locations and mitigate risk|
|Motorway A3, from junction Jakuševec to junction Ivanja Reka||EuroRAP||This case study concerns the Zagreb bypass, motorway A3 section from junction Jakuševec to junction Ivanja Reka where a Star Rating for Design Plans has been conducted.|
|Additional Lane||High||25 – 40%|
|Bicycle Facilities||Low to Medium||25 – 40%|
|Central Hatching||Low||10 – 25%|
|Central Turning Lane Full Length||Low||10 – 25%|
|Delineation||Low||10 – 25%|
|Duplication||High||25 – 40%|
|Intersection – Delineation||Low||10 – 25%|
|Intersection – Grade Separation||High||25 – 40%|
|Intersection – Roundabout||Low to Medium||60% or more|
|Intersection – Signalise||Medium||25 – 40%|