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Anti-Bicycle Toronto Mayor Ford Out Of A Job

Written by Boston Biker on Nov 26

Often described as a laughable Bumblefuck Mayor Ford of Toronto became an evil specter to most of the bike world as one of the few mayors of a large city that was not just indifferent to cyclists, but was actually in a war against them.

An Ontario judge has ordered that Toronto Mayor Rob Ford be relieved of his duties as the city’s chief magistrate after it was found he violated conflict of interest rules, but the outspoken politician says he’ll fight the decision.

On Monday morning, Ontario Superior Court Justice Charles T. Hackland said in his ruling that the mayor violated the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act by speaking and participating in a council vote regarding a financial penalty he was ordered to pay after he was found to have violated council’s code of conduct by soliciting donations to his football charity using city materials.

The ruling would take effect in 14 days because Hackland said he recognized the decision “will necessitate administrative changes in the City of Toronto.”(read more)

Lets just take a moment to enjoy the removal of a truly awful public official, who also happened to hate cyclists. I am not saying his horrible record on cycling infrastructure is what got him kicked out (it wasn’t), but I bet there are a lot of happy cyclists in Toronto today.


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Who’s To Blame?

Written by Boston Biker on Aug 31

Most bike crashes do not involve car-bike interaction. Most bike crashes (90%) are caused by bicyclists crashing into stationary objects (parked cars, pot holes, curbs, etc), and other non-car related things (other cyclists, pedestrians, animals). The vast majority of these crashes go unreported, because they are either minor injuries, or they simply have no one else to hold legally accountable so they don’t end up with a police report.

-blame_toon_andGrantCardone

A new study from Toronto show’s that of the 10% of crashes that do involve motorist-cyclist interaction a whopping 90% are because of motorists. (the following was stolen without permission from this amazing website, please forgive me!)

What are the Dangers in Terms of Cycling Safety?

  • Accident rates per kilometer are 26 to 48 times higher for bikes than for automobiles (13).
  • Nearly 44,000 cyclists have died in traffic crashes in the United States since 1932 (the first year in which estimates of cyclist fatalities were recorded) (14).
  • U.S. cyclists are three times more likely to be killed than German cyclists and six times more than Dutch cyclists, whether compared per-trip or per-distance traveled (7).
  • According the British Medical Journal, the most important deterrent to riding bikes expressed by non-cyclists is fear of motor traffic (15).
  • While motorists often accuse cyclists of being the cause of bike-car accidents, a Toronto analysis of 2572 police collision reports (Table 1) demonstrates that this is actually not the case. The most common type of crash in this study involved a motorist entering an intersection controlled by a stop sign or red light, and either failing to stop properly, or proceeding before it was safe to do so. The second most common crash type involved a motorist overtaking unsafely. The third most common type of crash is a motorist opening a door onto an oncoming cyclist. In fact, cyclists are the cause of less than 10% of bike-car accidents in this study (1).

    Table 1: Most Frequent Crash Types

    Crash Type Number of Cases Relative Frequency
    Drive Out at Controlled Intersection 284 12.20%
    Motorist Overtakign 277 11.90%
    Motorist Opens Door in front of Bicyclist 276 11.90%
    Motorist Left Turn – Facing Bicyclist 248 10.70%
    Motorist Right Turn – Other 224 9.60%
    Motorist Right Turn at Red Light 179 7.70%
    Drive Out from Lane or Driveway 179 7.70%
    Ride Out At Controlled Intersection 73 3.10%
    Wrong Way Bicyclist 59 2.50%
    Ride Out At Mid-block 51 2.20%

    From: Tomlinson, David. Conflicts Between Cyclists and Motorists in Toronto, Canada (1).

  • Data from Canada suggests that provinces that have invested the most in cycling tend to have the highest rates of cycling and also the lowest rates cycling mortality. Quebec has invested more than any other province on cycling (5). For the period 1987 to 2000, the total number of bicycles in Quebec more than doubled, and the number of regular cyclists increased by 50%, while cycling fatalities fell by 42%, serious injuries fell by 56%, and minor injuries fell by 38% (5).
  • Data from Europe (Figures 1and 2) also suggests that counties that have invested the most in cycling tend to have the highest rates of cycling and also the lowest rates cycling mortality (6).

Figure 1: Cycling risk versus cycling intensity in European countries

figure1

Risk of cycling tends to be lowest in the countries with the most cycling (6)

Figure 2: Bicycling in Netherlands 1980-1998

figure2

A 30% increase in cycle traffic is associated with a two-third reduction in risk, e.g. a decrease of the total number of fatal cycling accidents (6).

As levels of pedestrian and bicyclist activity rise their per capita risk falls. Drivers adapt their behavior in the presence of increased cycling and walking (17).

I highly suggest you go read the rest of this website, as it is very well put together and very convincing.


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The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Misinterpreting Statistics To Show Cyclists As Causing More Bike-Car Crashes Than Drivers November 24, 2014
      TweetYet again, the passage of a 3 foot passing law, designed to protect cyclists as drivers pass them, sparked a debate. This time, the debate ensued in San Diego, California. The argument was over sharing the road, not surprising given … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • Capitalizing On The Death Of Cyclists November 21, 2014
      TweetSometimes it seems as if advertising people will do anything to sell us their wares. Many of the things they do are outrageous, and if the rest of us did these things, we would be admonished for being unethical or … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • Cranks Giving! November 20, 2014
      TweetFrom the F-book: ————– Saturday, November 22 at 1:00pm in EST Copley Square Copley Sq, Boston, Massachusetts 02116 First annual Cranksgiving Boston bike ride! Bring a bike, a bag, and a lock. This event is FREE but you’ll need about … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Action Alert: Allston I-90 Interchange Project November 20, 2014
      TweetLets make sure we don’t end up with just another highway, see below From Livable Streets: ———-   We have a vision for something more than just a new highway.  After months of MassDOT I-90 Allston Interchange task force meetings, … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • THE DANGERS OF SAFETY: Why Focusing on Car Accidents May Hurt Our Health November 18, 2014
      Everyone officially puts “safety first.” Everyone wants to prevent accidents. Car crashes are treated as lead stories on TV news – the images are horrific and we all fear our vulnerability. But, in fact, our roads are safer than ever. In 1956, when Interstate construction began, the national fatality rate was 6.05 per 100 million […]
      Steve Miller
    • rain, wind and cold. ride anyway. November 17, 2014
      Tweetwell yeah, rain, wind, cold, dark, traffic – it beats driving a car, and def beats riding the ever so depressing Boston Subway system. Plus it makes you feel strong to be out in the elements. Ha, bad weather… ride … Continue reading →
      altbiker
    • Building Sidewalks For Children November 17, 2014
      TweetWhat have our societies become when local authorities are forced to apply for grants to build sidewalks for children? While this is a good thing, as it allows the children to engage in healthier options for traveling to school, it … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • Help MIT Students Test Outdoor Bicycle Training Device November 14, 2014
      TweetFrom the email, looks like fun! ———- We are engineering students at MIT who are building a device (Terrainer) for competitive cyclists to train outdoors.  To further improve our project, we are looking for competitive cyclists to help test and provide feedback … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Cambridge To Follow Boston’s Lead On Side Guards For Trucks November 14, 2014
      TweetI have talked about this a couple of times (here and here and here), and its great to see Cambridge moving forward with this simple and awesome plan.  Via On Monday, November 10, the City of Cambridge took a major step … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Cold weather glove review November 13, 2014
      TweetCold weather riding has it’s advantages. If you ride the paths, you begin to notice that there is much less traffic on the bike paths. The people out there tend to be more experienced and cordial that the fair weather … Continue reading →
      altbiker