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Where 2018’s bicycle collisions happened + More from the Traffic Report

Chart showing bicycle collision rate per 1,000 commuters. the trend is down from 2009 to 2018.Biking is getting gradually safer in Seattle with the rate of collisions involving people on bikes per bike commuter dropping to a new low point in 2018, according to the annual Seattle Department of Transportation Traffic Report.

The report, released two weeks ago, does not include any 2019 data. It offers a detailed look at transportation trends in the city, including safety. Here are the streets where collisions involving people on bikes occurred:

Map of 2018 bicycle collisions.And here’s a map of the year’s serious injury and fatal collisions:

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Map of serious injury and fatal collisions. The share of commuters driving alone to work is dropping fast with transit and walking growing fastest.

Chart of commute trends by mode. But Seattle’s population keeps growing, so even as the driving rate falls, the total amount of driving stays stubbornly flat.

Chart of average traffic over time.Driving, of course, is our city’s top source of greenhouse gas emissions. So while it is promising that total driving is not growing with the population, we need to find a way to reduce driving even as the city grows. Perhaps Oslo has some ideas to share.

You see more in the full report (PDF).

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6 responses to “Where 2018’s bicycle collisions happened + More from the Traffic Report”

  1. Location details are super interesting. Assuming the locations are precise to the block…

    So many collisions along Roosevelt, and not so many along 11th/12th… probably due to greater speeds on the downhill?

    – Lots of collisions where the Burke crosses 15th, an intersection where there are lots of conflicts with turning traffic and somewhat bad sight lines.

    – The lower part of Stone Way stands out. Not super surprising considering its important place in the bike network combined with all the uncontrolled turning movements and high-turnover street parking.

    – Dexter between Mercer and Denny might be safer in the construction segments because construction cuts down on width and eliminates those dumb “car funnels” into the right-turn mixing zones…

    – I bet over half the collisions on Pine and on 12th on First Hill and Capitol Hill are doorings.

    – Holgate. 4th Ave S. People do ride to destinations in SODO and it’s outrageously dangerous.

    1. Stuart

      “where the Burke crosses 15th” For the most part cars and buses have priority at this intersection. No turn on red from Pacific, please! Protect the students!

  2. Jack

    It always worries me how drivers swerve into the bike lane on 10th ave to get around cars waiting to turn onto Boston, looks like I’m right to be afraid.

  3. In West Seattle, Sylvan/Orchard stands out. Curvy, fast downhill with poor sight lines, and disappearing/reappearing/disappearing uphill bike lanes on one of the few east-west routes with reasonable grades. This is one of the citywide bike routes included in the 2018 BMP Implementation Plan, then taken away by Mayor Durkan’s cuts in 2019.

  4. Matt

    Interesting pattern I noticed in the data: Notice how there are zero bicycle collisions reported on the Westlake cycle track, but a significant number are reported on Dexter from Mercer to the Fremont bridge. I’d assume that the flat, separated Westlake route also attracts more riders as well, which anecdotally seems to be the case in my experience. Just goes to show the difference between fully separated routes vs just decent bike lanes with some separation.

    1. Andy Sapuntzakis

      I think the bike path should be grade-separated – half curb height above street, half curb height below sidewalk – without obstacles like posts, stanchions, planters, etc.

      This may require some re-profiling of the road to maintain (fix) drainage.

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