How cycling has changed over the years

Cycling is something most of us enjoyed when we were younger, riding through the streets with all our friends not having a care in the world. But cycling is something that can die out when we reach adulthood.

Only 1% of vehicles accounted for on the British roads were bikes in 2014, presenting us with a significant drop of 13% since 1952. There are many factors that could contribute to this. True Solicitors, specialists in bicycle accident claims, investigate why more people don’t cycle:

Cycling in the city

Cycling to work could be the perfect alternative to driving or using public transport. You’ll have the ability to skip traffic, avoid delays and save financially as well as creating a better lifestyle for yourself. It can reduce your carbon footprint too. Plus, the introduction of newer models of cycles, like eBikes, could be perfect for those who need a helping hand on their cycling route. You might like the sound of all these benefits and are wondering why there aren’t more cyclists on our roads.

In 2014, the UK Department of Transport found in a survey that 64% felt like it was far too dangerous to cycle on the road. A main contributor to this decision horror stories from friends or what has happened in the media. With social media becoming more popular and advanced, more cyclists are sharing their personal stories which usually go viral after they release GoPro footage of sometimes angry drivers crashing into them.

The number of casualties (including injuries and death) in 2015 was around 5,800 per billion miles which could play a great part in why we are seeing fewer cyclists on our roads. However, it’s important to consider the bigger picture.

More information released by the Department of Transport showed that people were more likely to die walking than they were cycling. Almost 31 cyclists died for every billion miles cycled in 2015, whereas 35.8 pedestrians died for every billion miles walked.

How the government is encouraging cycling

A 1.2 billion investment was announced this year to make cycling and walking the norm by 2040. The government has said that they will work with local councils, the community and charities to make this possible.

They have already created changes in eight major cities in the UK. In Birmingham, they have refurbished seven canal routes with surfaces that will help cyclists in all weather conditions. In Cambridge, they have built a new pedestrian and cycle bridge over the River Cam. In Leeds, they have designated a cycleway from East Leeds to Bradford. They have created seven new cycle routes in Manchester.

Four new cycle routes linking suburbs to the city centre have been created in Newcastle, while an 8-mile cycle route has been created in Norwich. In Bristol, they have improved heavy traffic junctions that will help cyclists in that area and in Oxford, they have improved routes to make them safer for all.

This shows that despite the dangers of cycling on British roads, the government is actively working to ensure the safety of cyclists throughout the country. In the future, this could see the number of cyclists on our roads increase.

Sources: many people cycle and how often?


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