Bicycle travel, injury risk and conspicuity: application of epidemiological methods

This thesis comprises three main components - bicycle travel, injury risk and conspicuity and aims: 1. to investigate the prevalence of bicycle travel, particularly for a trip to work, and identify associated enablers and barriers, 2. to estimate the exposure-based rate of bicycle crash injuries and identify associated risk and protective factors, and 3. to assess the role of conspicuity in bicycle crashes involving a motor vehicle. This research was based on the Taupo Bicycle Study, a prospective cohort study involving 2628 adult cyclists (aged 16 years and over). Bicycle crash outcome data were collected through linkage to insurance claims, hospital discharges, mortality records and police reports. In New Zealand, the prevalence of bicycle commuting is low and has been in decline between 1986 and 2006 (note that there are signs of recovery recently). The exposure-based rate of bicycle crash injuries is relatively high compared to other road user categories. Regional differences in travel patterns and injury risks suggest that the risk in scarcity effect exists for New Zealand cyclists. This may be attributed partly to the poor attention conspicuity of cyclists and partly to poor cycling infrastructure in the country’s car-dominated traffic environment. Conspicuity aids used to enhance physical conspicuity may be ineffective in such situation. In the last two decades, New Zealand has been caught in a vicious circle - a lower proportion of cyclists on the road decreases their conspicuity and poses them a higher crash risk which in turn discourages bicycle use. Turning this vicious circle to a virtuous one requires cooperative and multidisciplinary efforts to promote cyclists’ safety and encourage cycling on New Zealand roads.


  • English

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  • Pagination: 1 file

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01573528
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: ARRB
  • Files: ITRD, ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 24 2015 2:13PM