Cycling is about "Safe exercise" and "Safe low-emission travel" The Health and Fitness objective is UNDERMINED if the means of exercise is UNSAFE! This blog STRONGLY OPPOSES certain reforms VicRoads is currently considering: “cyclists could be allowed to treat red lights as Give Way signs. And the same could also APPLY at pedestrian lights."
Also "PERMITTING cyclists, riding cautiously, to proceed past a stationary tram;" "allowing teenagers to ride on footpaths"(Herald Sun)PDowe
Monday, June 10, 2013
Cycling & TAC Cycling Injuries Victoria TAC Data 2000- 2011 The Age May 28th 2013
Serious injuries among middle-aged cyclists have almost tripled in Victoria since 2000, analysis of Transport Accident Commission data shows.
Serious injury claims among people aged between 40 and 59 who were involved in crashes with motor vehicles jumped from 47 in 2000 to an 11-year high of 134 in 2011. Their claims made up 39 per cent of 2011's total, compared with 22 per cent in 2000.
Over the same period, serious injuries have more than halved among younger riders. People aged 17 years and younger comprised 31 per cent of hospital admissions in 2000, but in 2011 they were 7 per cent.
Serious injuries from bicycle accidents rise with age.
Even though middle-aged cyclists are over-represented in injury statistics, a 2011 Austroads survey found people in the 40-and-over age group were much less likely to cycle than younger Victorians.
Former runner Michael Day, 50, said he took up cycling as a ''low-impact'' method of keeping fit, but already twice this year the sport has left him with cracked bones and giant blue bruises ''the size of Texas'' - after mishaps on Beach Road.
Earlier this month, the school principal broke his collarbone and fractured his spine when clipped by another cyclist. Less than a month earlier a car drove into him, resulting in a cracked pelvis, broken toe and bruising so severe he was on crutches for two weeks.
The TAC data shows more than one in 10 cyclists who were hospitalised with injuries had to spend more than two weeks in hospital. But the percentage needing more than a fortnight to recuperate is lower than that for drivers, pedestrians and motorcyclists.
Institute of Transport Studies research fellow Marilyn Johnson said higher injury rates were partially due to an increased popularity and a dramatic jump in recreational cycling among the 40-59 age group.
''More and more people are riding to work, but there has been a huge increase in people hopping on a road bike and riding longer distances,'' Dr Johnson said. ''It may be that being on the road for longer exposes them to higher risk.''
TAC road safety senior manager Samantha Cockfield said recreational riders were also more at risk of injury because they rode alongside heavy traffic, while cyclists who rode to work tended to go off-road or use dedicated bike lanes.