Anyone who’s ever ridden a bikeshare bike can tell you: they are hardy, aluminum tanks on two wheels. But does that translate to an inherently safer experience on the street, especially when many casual riders are likely unfamiliar with a city’s bike infrastructure?
A recent study from the Mineta Transportation Institute determined that yes, bikeshare systems in major metropolitan areas have low rates of collisions, and are in fact safer than riding a personal bike.
The report, “Bikesharing and Bicycle Safety,” examined at data from three active bikeshare systems: Capital Bikeshare in Washington, D.C., Nice Ride in Minneapolis/St. Paul, and Bay Area Bike Share in the San Francisco Bay Area. Researchers also met with focus groups of bikeshare riders and non-members in San Francisco and San Jose to determine riders’ habits and perceptions, sought insight from road-safety experts, and analyzed crash data from the various operators and state transportation agencies in the three metropolitan areas.
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