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Old 10-22-09, 12:26 PM   #1
Rouen
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just the facts

I'm doing a paper for a college class on cycling, I need some facts to back up statements. I need some statistics too, like on cyclists/motor vehicle accidents due to position on the road, or due to cyclists acting as pedestrians. the main points are going to be cyclists(a basic overview of riding styles, etc.), their rights(most states allow cyclists the right to take the lane, etc.) and maybe a couple of paragraphs on law enforcement(this would focus on those who make cyclists look bad by riding unpredictably or illegally). if anyone can supply some good informative websites that would help I would really appreciate it.
Thanks.
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Old 01-07-10, 04:02 PM   #2
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I'm doing a paper for a college class on cycling, I need some facts to back up statements. I need some statistics too, like on cyclists/motor vehicle accidents due to position on the road, or due to cyclists acting as pedestrians. the main points are going to be cyclists(a basic overview of riding styles, etc.), their rights(most states allow cyclists the right to take the lane, etc.) and maybe a couple of paragraphs on law enforcement(this would focus on those who make cyclists look bad by riding unpredictably or illegally). if anyone can supply some good informative websites that would help I would really appreciate it.
Thanks.
Try getting some stats from the League. They're "in the business" of promoting cycling and safety training. You may do better there than in the wolves den of opinions. Maybe sit in on a class. Good luck with the paper.
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Old 01-07-10, 04:10 PM   #3
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http://www.iowabicyclecoalition.org/

http://www.bikeleague.org/
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Old 01-07-10, 04:20 PM   #4
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Here is a pretty good compilation of various reports.

http://www.industrializedcyclist.com/lies.html

Trying to get the cyclist road position data however is going to be rather difficult.
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Old 01-07-10, 05:22 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Rouen View Post
I'm doing a paper for a college class on cycling, I need some facts to back up statements. I need some statistics too, like on cyclists/motor vehicle accidents due to position on the road, or due to cyclists acting as pedestrians. the main points are going to be cyclists(a basic overview of riding styles, etc.), their rights(most states allow cyclists the right to take the lane, etc.) and maybe a couple of paragraphs on law enforcement(this would focus on those who make cyclists look bad by riding unpredictably or illegally). if anyone can supply some good informative websites that would help I would really appreciate it.
Thanks.
The most statistically robust study of car-bike collisions is that done by Kenneth D. Cross and Gary Fisher, A Study of Bicycle Motor Vehicle Accidents: Identification of Problem Types and Countermeasure Approaches, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 1976.

Copies of Cross's study are hard to find; your university library may be able to find a copy. You will also need some analysis of Cross's data, for which read Forester, John, Bicycle Transportation, The MIT Press, 1994.
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Old 01-07-10, 05:27 PM   #6
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Bek, do you want to tell the OP or should I?
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Old 01-07-10, 05:51 PM   #7
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you go ahead.
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Old 01-08-10, 12:27 PM   #8
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I'm doing a paper for a college class on cycling, I need some facts to back up statements.
Wait. Do you already have the statements?
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Old 01-09-10, 09:55 AM   #9
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studies of bicyclists road position versus acting like pedestrians?

interesting......

There's a lot of research extant on cyclist safety in cities around the world. I'd suggest the OP look at two rather exhaustive monographs of bicycling safety studies and see if he can find any tidbits thru further research:

"The impact of transportation infrastructure on bicycling injuries and crashes: a review of the literature" 2009, Renyolds, Harris Teshke, Cripton and Winters, Environmental Health,

that study is available online.

Additionally,
John Pucher, Jennifer Dill and Susan Handy's 2009 monograph "Infrastructure, Programs and policies to increase bicycling: an international review" prepared for the active living program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and scheduled for publication in Feb2010 Preventative Medicine.

that is also available online. sorry i don't provide the links, i just have them sitting around in hard copy.

Try those two, they will lead you to many studies and programs more recent than a singular, over referred to, 35 year old study.


forester and his review of the cross/fisher stats is widely discredited in the bicycle transportation field.

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Old 01-09-10, 05:51 PM   #10
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Try those two, they will lead you to many studies and programs more recent than a singular, over referred to, 35 year old study.


forester and his review of the cross/fisher stats is widely discredited in the bicycle transportation field.
Mr. Bek, this is the first that I have heard about my review of the Cross/Fisher stats being widely discredited in the bicycle transportation field. Not that I haven't received criticism in the thirty or so years since I first published about Cross's study, but I don't recall the specific criticism that you claim exists. I think that you should provide support for your claim with specific attention fo my review (I prefer to call it analysis) of the Cross/Fisher statistical study of car-bike collisions.
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Old 01-09-10, 06:44 PM   #11
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john, I will let your reputation speak for itself.

anything you've written about the cross/fisher study is seldom even referred to nowadays in the annals of bicycle transportation literature. You being 'widely discredited' may not be most accurate, perhaps i should have said throughly debunked.

to the OP: take a look at the many dozens of studies referenced at those two papers. I don't believe JF even gets a nod there. maybe he did, i gave it a quick once over, but no.

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Old 01-10-10, 02:00 AM   #12
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john, I will let your reputation speak for itself.

anything you've written about the cross/fisher study is seldom even referred to nowadays in the annals of bicycle transportation literature. You being 'widely discredited' may not be most accurate, perhaps i should have said throughly debunked.

to the OP: take a look at the many dozens of studies referenced at those two papers. I don't believe JF even gets a nod there. maybe he did, i gave it a quick once over, but no.
And with that I must advise the OP to be very careful at what john forester claims or states about anything bicycle related. He has a militant, I am always right, you are always wrong attitude about it. He is arrogant and thinks he knows everything there is to know about cycling. He may be old, but in his case wisdom does not come with age. He is not willing to accept council from anyone, or perhaps form anyone younger then he is.But he has no problem with giving his so called council. the problem is he is way too in your face about it. He does not admit to or apologize for mistakes and claims he makes none when he states his rhetoric regarding cycling. He calls anyone who does not ride bike likes he think they should incompetent. When anyone disagrees or critisizes him he is insulting and his arrogance is even worse.

That said I am in no way saying my method of cycling is the only or perfect way to ride. I admit to mistakes I make and I never think I am always right and everyone else who does not ride like I do or like I think they should is wrong or incompetent.

My method or type of riding is not vc, as forester would like to see me and everyone else do. It is called Adaptive Cycling, or AC. Just ask and I'll give you the definition and an example of it. I don't speak about it unless asked to in a situation like this. Unlike forester who is quick to throw in his rhetoric even in threads where it is not wanted or welcomed. Not saying this is one of those threads but there have been some. forester has gotten so bad I have had to put him on my ignore list and I suspect others have done the same. I no longer have any desire to discuss anything further with him. He can not control himself and his arrogance or insulting attitude.

So take what he says with a huge grain of salt and with care.
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Old 01-10-10, 10:34 AM   #13
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Mr. Bek, this is the first that I have heard about my review of the Cross/Fisher stats being widely discredited in the bicycle transportation field. Not that I haven't received criticism in the thirty or so years since I first published about Cross's study, but I don't recall the specific criticism that you claim exists. I think that you should provide support for your claim with specific attention fo my review (I prefer to call it analysis) of the Cross/Fisher statistical study of car-bike collisions.


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john, I will let your reputation speak for itself.

anything you've written about the cross/fisher study is seldom even referred to nowadays in the annals of bicycle transportation literature. You being 'widely discredited' may not be most accurate, perhaps i should have said throughly debunked.

to the OP: take a look at the many dozens of studies referenced at those two papers. I don't believe JF even gets a nod there. maybe he did, i gave it a quick once over, but no.
I notice that you don't present evidence that Cross's statistical study of car-bike collisions and my analysis of them has been "throughly (sic) debunked, " to use your words, as well as failing to support your claim that it has been scientifically criticized.

However, your statement that bicycle advocates ignore that work is accurate. That work contains the scientific proof, dated 1978, that the governmental program regarding bicycle transportation, designed by motorists for the purpose of making motoring more convenient, acts to enlarge the known major traffic hazards because it caters to unrealistic popular fears instead of providing countermeasures to the known traffic hazards. Since the disproof of the governmental program so loved by bicycle advocates cannot reasonably be discredited, bicycle advocates and governmental personnel have to ignore it (although the Cross study is a government document issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration).
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Old 01-10-10, 10:44 AM   #14
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And with that I must advise the OP to be very careful at what john forester claims or states about anything bicycle related. He has a militant, I am always right, you are always wrong attitude about it. He is arrogant and thinks he knows everything there is to know about cycling. He may be old, but in his case wisdom does not come with age. He is not willing to accept council from anyone, or perhaps form anyone younger then he is.But he has no problem with giving his so called council. the problem is he is way too in your face about it. He does not admit to or apologize for mistakes and claims he makes none when he states his rhetoric regarding cycling. He calls anyone who does not ride bike likes he think they should incompetent. When anyone disagrees or critisizes him he is insulting and his arrogance is even worse.

That said I am in no way saying my method of cycling is the only or perfect way to ride. I admit to mistakes I make and I never think I am always right and everyone else who does not ride like I do or like I think they should is wrong or incompetent.

My method or type of riding is not vc, as forester would like to see me and everyone else do. It is called Adaptive Cycling, or AC. Just ask and I'll give you the definition and an example of it. I don't speak about it unless asked to in a situation like this. Unlike forester who is quick to throw in his rhetoric even in threads where it is not wanted or welcomed. Not saying this is one of those threads but there have been some. forester has gotten so bad I have had to put him on my ignore list and I suspect others have done the same. I no longer have any desire to discuss anything further with him. He can not control himself and his arrogance or insulting attitude.

So take what he says with a huge grain of salt and with care.
It is remarkable how well Mr Square plays the part of William Jennings Bryan at the Scopes trial when confronted by Clarence Darrow.
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Old 01-10-10, 11:44 AM   #15
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I notice that you don't present evidence that Cross's statistical study of car-bike collisions and my analysis of them has been "throughly (sic) debunked, " to use your words, as well as failing to support your claim that it has been scientifically criticized.

However, your statement that bicycle advocates ignore that work is accurate. That work contains the scientific proof, dated 1978, that the governmental program regarding bicycle transportation, designed by motorists for the purpose of making motoring more convenient, acts to enlarge the known major traffic hazards because it caters to unrealistic popular fears instead of providing countermeasures to the known traffic hazards. Since the disproof of the governmental program so loved by bicycle advocates cannot reasonably be discredited, bicycle advocates and governmental personnel have to ignore it (although the Cross study is a government document issued by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration).
Of course the Cross Report at no point even mentions any "facts" about government programs regarding bicycle transportation, nor a word about unrealistic popular fears, nor a word about countermeasures to cycling risk.

All the so-called "proof" about these Forester Brand issues is revealed ONLY in the Forester Brand "analysis' of the obscure Cross Report. The Forester Brand analysis technique includes cherry picked data subjected to Forester Brand conjecture, interpretations, extrapolations, and fabrications about actual cycling risk in order to arrive at the "proof" of a Forester Brand predetermined conclusion.

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Old 01-10-10, 12:25 PM   #16
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Of course the Cross Report at no point even mentions any "facts" about government programs regarding bicycle transportation, nor a word about unrealistic popular fears, nor a word about countermeasures to cycling risk.

All the so-called "proof" about these Forester Brand issues is revealed ONLY in the Forester Brand "analysis' of the obscure Cross Report. The Forester Brand analysis technique includes cherry picked data subjected to Forester Brand conjecture, interpretations, extrapolations, and fabrications about actual cycling risk in order to arrive at the "proof" of a Forester Brand predetermined conclusion.
ILTB is indeed correct when he states that the Cross statistics makes no mention of "government programs regarding bicycle transportation, nor a word about unrealistic popular fears, nor a word about countermeasures to cycling risk." The Cross statistics demonstrate the relative frequencies of the different types of car-bike collision and their contributing factors, and, as I say, it is the best such study ever done. It is universally recognized in the safety engineering field that such a study is the required basis of any comprehensive safety program, for only through the understanding provided by such a study can a useful safety program be designed.

The governmental program regarding bicycle transportation is designed almost entirely to provide protection from same-direction motor traffic. Keeping bicycle traffic out of motorists' way suits motorists, who designed the system. The system is also strongly supported by bicycle advocates, whom one might think would be suspicious of a program designed to make motoring more convenient, because they recognize that the public so fears same-direction motor traffic that its members won't cycle unless protected from that traffic.

The Cross statistics demonstrate that same-direction motor traffic causes only about 1/20 of the car-bike collisions while turning and crossing movements cause about 19/20 of them. That proves that the governmental program is not directed at cyclist safety, and that the public fears that "justify" that program are irrational, and that the proper countermeasures for cyclist safety would be entirely different from the governmental program.
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Old 01-10-10, 02:21 PM   #17
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The Cross statistics demonstrate the relative frequencies of the different types of car-bike collision and their contributing factors, and, as I say, it is the best such study ever done.
1. Sorry, the John Forester endorsement as the "best such study ever done" doesn't carry much weight outside of LCI circles.
2. The Cross statistics only shows the "relative frequencies [i.e percentage of the total] of different types of car-bike collision" for the limited number of accidents which were included in the survey. It provided no measure of the probabilities of any type of accident occurring because it did not gather any data about where/how the total population of cyclists ride on the street, road or sidewalk.

Risk is determined by measuring with probabilities to include the exposure rate in combination with an evaluation of the severity of the various injuries incurred after exposure to the hazards.

The Cross report included none of these measurements and just went with a total count of accidents and what circumstances may have led to those specific accidents. Any extrapolation of the Cross "statistics" to a conclusion about cycling risk requires a Forsteronian Leap of Faith that cyclists are exposed to all type of car-accidents scenarios equally, and that all type accidents produce injury severity of equal value.
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Old 01-10-10, 03:45 PM   #18
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1. Sorry, the John Forester endorsement as the "best such study ever done" doesn't carry much weight outside of LCI circles.
2. The Cross statistics only shows the "relative frequencies [i.e percentage of the total] of different types of car-bike collision" for the limited number of accidents which were included in the survey. It provided no measure of the probabilities of any type of accident occurring because it did not gather any data about where/how the total population of cyclists ride on the street, road or sidewalk.

Risk is determined by measuring with probabilities to include the exposure rate in combination with an evaluation of the severity of the various injuries incurred after exposure to the hazards.

The Cross report included none of these measurements and just went with a total count of accidents and what circumstances may have led to those specific accidents. Any extrapolation of the Cross "statistics" to a conclusion about cycling risk requires a Forsteronian Leap of Faith that cyclists are exposed to all type of car-accidents scenarios equally, and that all type accidents produce injury severity of equal value.
Here is ILTB raising issues which he is too smart not to know are irrelevant and therefore equivalent to lies. Consider that in some community in recent years there have been 29 accidents from people falling into storm drains and 2 accidents from people falling into wells. Quite clearly, a program to install safe grates into storm drains will have much more effect in reducing falling-into accidents than will one to install safety covers over wells. No knowledge of risk is required.
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Old 01-10-10, 03:50 PM   #19
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1. Sorry, the John Forester endorsement as the "best such study ever done" doesn't carry much weight outside of LCI circles.
OK, ILTB, name a study of car-bike collisions that you think is superior to the Cross study and describe why it is superior to the Cross study. Both accuracy and usefulness are necessary criteria, for an inaccurate study is misleading while an accurate study that provides little useful information is useless.
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Old 01-10-10, 05:53 PM   #20
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ILTB is indeed correct when he states that the Cross statistics makes no mention of "government programs regarding bicycle transportation, nor a word about unrealistic popular fears, nor a word about countermeasures to cycling risk." The Cross statistics demonstrate the relative frequencies of the different types of car-bike collision and their contributing factors, and, as I say, it is the best such study ever done. It is universally recognized in the safety engineering field that such a study is the required basis of any comprehensive safety program, for only through the understanding provided by such a study can a useful safety program be designed.

The governmental program regarding bicycle transportation is designed almost entirely to provide protection from same-direction motor traffic. Keeping bicycle traffic out of motorists' way suits motorists, who designed the system. The system is also strongly supported by bicycle advocates, whom one might think would be suspicious of a program designed to make motoring more convenient, because they recognize that the public so fears same-direction motor traffic that its members won't cycle unless protected from that traffic.

The Cross statistics demonstrate that same-direction motor traffic causes only about 1/20 of the car-bike collisions while turning and crossing movements cause about 19/20 of them. That proves that the governmental program is not directed at cyclist safety, and that the public fears that "justify" that program are irrational, and that the proper countermeasures for cyclist safety would be entirely different from the governmental program.
The Cross statistics, regarding a few hundred car-bike collisions which occurred in one California town in the early seventies, as Cross himself explains, show one thing very clearly (and one thing only): that child bicyclists tend to have very different sorts of collisions than adult bicyclists. Your analysis of this study is bankrupt as long as you pretend not to notice the profound impact of age on the types of accidents recorded.

Forester's overall view of the 'bikeway program' may be correct, I don't know. Let's say that it is, for argument's sake. That doesn't mean we should make important planning decisions today based on what a bunch of little kids were doing in suburban California in the 1970s.

Edit: The first Cross study can be viewed on J. Forester's website: IDENTIFYING CRITICAL BEHAVIOR LEADING TO COLLISIONS BETWEEN BICYCLES AND MOTOR VEHICLES (1)

The articles Bek mentioned and dozens of others can be downloaded for full view here.

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Old 01-10-10, 06:15 PM   #21
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The Cross statistics, regarding a few hundred car-bike collisions which occurred in one California town in the early seventies, as Cross himself explains, show one thing very clearly (and one thing only): that child bicyclists tend to have very different sorts of collisions than adult bicyclists. Your analysis of this study is bankrupt as long as you pretend not to notice the profound impact of age on the types of accidents recorded.

Forester's overall view of the 'bikeway program' may be correct, I don't know. Let's say that it is, for argument's sake. That doesn't mean we should make important planning decisions today based on what a bunch of little kids were doing in suburban California in the 1970s.

Edit: The first Cross study can be viewed on J. Forester's website: IDENTIFYING CRITICAL BEHAVIOR LEADING TO COLLISIONS BETWEEN BICYCLES AND MOTOR VEHICLES (1)

The articles Bek mentioned and dozens of others can be downloaded for full view here.
Hurst misidentifies the first and minor Cross study, made from all reported Santa Barbara County (not city) car-bike collisions in a year, for the California Office of Traffic Safety as the second and major Cross study, made from more than 1,000 car-bike collisions in four states deemed to be reasonably representative of the nation, for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, titled A Study of Bicycle/Motor-vehicle Accidents: Identification of Problem Types and Countermeasure Approaches. Dated 1976, but published in 1978
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Old 01-10-10, 06:20 PM   #22
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OK, ILTB, name a study of car-bike collisions that you think is superior to the Cross study and describe why it is superior to the Cross study. Both accuracy and usefulness are necessary criteria, for an inaccurate study is misleading while an accurate study that provides little useful information is useless.
The standard Forester defense of fabricating conclusions from whole cloth out of "statistics" that are inadequate in every respect to reach the conclusion. i.e "Name a study that is better than my The Center of the Moon is made up of Green Cheese study. If you can't come up with a superior study, then mine is the best available evidence and the Moon IS made up of Green Cheese until better evidence comes along."
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Old 01-10-10, 07:41 PM   #23
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Hurst misidentifies the first and minor Cross study, made from all reported Santa Barbara County (not city) car-bike collisions in a year, for the California Office of Traffic Safety as the second and major Cross study, made from more than 1,000 car-bike collisions in four states deemed to be reasonably representative of the nation, for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, titled A Study of Bicycle/Motor-vehicle Accidents: Identification of Problem Types and Countermeasure Approaches. Dated 1976, but published in 1978
Ah, the "Cross-Fisher study." This comes to the same conclusion as the first Cross study. Age is the primary determiner for accident type, and for accident culpability.

It's not just Forester. There are many out there trying to use studies like this to support an anti-bike lane agenda. They have to ignore the most glaring results of the study to do it. Should be a red flag for sensible folks.

Edit: I think these studies are useful, but it should be taken into account that the cycling population has changed rather drastically in the decades since these two Cross studies were produced, and the 'stratigraphy' of accidents has changed accordingly.

Last edited by RobertHurst; 01-10-10 at 08:13 PM. Reason: afterthought
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Old 01-10-10, 09:00 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by RobertHurst View Post
The Cross statistics, regarding a few hundred car-bike collisions which occurred in one California town in the early seventies, as Cross himself explains, show one thing very clearly (and one thing only): that child bicyclists tend to have very different sorts of collisions than adult bicyclists. Your analysis of this study is bankrupt as long as you pretend not to notice the profound impact of age on the types of accidents recorded.

Forester's overall view of the 'bikeway program' may be correct, I don't know. Let's say that it is, for argument's sake. That doesn't mean we should make important planning decisions today based on what a bunch of little kids were doing in suburban California in the 1970s.

Edit: The first Cross study can be viewed on J. Forester's website: IDENTIFYING CRITICAL BEHAVIOR LEADING TO COLLISIONS BETWEEN BICYCLES AND MOTOR VEHICLES (1)

The articles Bek mentioned and dozens of others can be downloaded for full view here.
Mr. Hurst, Are you more or less saying that what applied and what was in use between 30 and 40 years ago very likely does not apply today and thus should not be used today if it does not apply?

If you are saying this and if this is the case, why does forester cite and draw from things 30 or 40 years ago? I am basing this on what I could stomach from him before I put him on my ignore list and when someone quotes him to respond to something he said.
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Old 01-10-10, 09:02 PM   #25
Bekologist
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Originally Posted by john forester
However, your statement that bicycle advocates ignore (my) work is accurate.
don't kid yourself, john. why limit the scope of your critics?

Last edited by Bekologist; 01-10-10 at 09:19 PM.
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