The proportion of bicycle usage is much higher in the new towns and New Territories than the dense urban area.22–24 As the local environment such as topography and cycling facilities can vary significantly within a city, it is worth exploring SIN across different neighbourhoods.The following section will introduce the research methodology.
Since cycling activities are likely to vary within a city, a more local-based approach in promoting cycling is needed.
In particular, the higher safety risks in neighbourhoods of low bicycle usage, especially at an initial stage of promoting cycling, need to be addressed properly.
Once again, SIN has been systematically examined at international, national, and regional levels, but it has never been investigated across all communities within the same city.
Will SIN for cyclists apply at the local level across the whole territory of a city?
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See: increasing concern about global warming and environmental degradation has highlighted the importance of environmentally sustainable transport.1 Since cycling has great potential in reducing carbon emissions and noise levels when compared with travelling by car, it is widely considered as one of the most environmentally sustainable transport modes.2 3 As an active mode of transport, cycling is also regarded as an excellent way to benefit public health as a form of vigorous physical activities.4 Nonetheless, cyclists are more vulnerable to traffic injuries than other road users such as car drivers because they are less likely to be protected by their vehicles.
In this light, cycling safety is better measured as risk, where cycling exposure or the volume of cycling on the road is properly considered.
In recent decades, a number of studies suggested a phenomenon called ‘Safety in Numbers (SIN)’ for cyclists.6–13 For instance, Jacobsen7 concluded that a motorist was less likely to collide with a cyclist or pedestrian if more people cycled and walked.
Objective This paper examines the relationship between bicycle collisions and the amount of cycling at the local level.
Most previous research has focused on national and city comparisons, little is known about differences within a city (the mesoscale).
Focusing on single-bicycle crashes, Schepers8 found that the risk of severe injury was also lower in municipalities with a high amount of cycling.