Drivers' and cyclists' experiences of sharing the road: incidents, attitudes and perceptions of visibility

Accid Anal Prev. 2009 Jul;41(4):772-6. doi: 10.1016/j.aap.2009.03.014. Epub 2009 Apr 17.


This study explored the beliefs and attitudes of cyclists and drivers regarding cyclist visibility, use of visibility aids and crashes involving cyclists and motorists. Data are presented for 1460 participants (622 drivers and 838 cyclists) and demonstrate that there are high rates of cyclist-vehicle crashes, many of which were reported to be due to the driver not seeing the cyclist in time to avoid a collision. A divergence in attitudes was also apparent in terms of attribution of responsibility in cyclist-vehicle conflicts on the road. While the use of visibility aids was advocated by cyclists, this was not reflected in self-reported wearing patterns, and cyclists reported that the distance at which they would be first recognised by a driver was twice that estimated by the drivers. Collectively, these results suggest that interventions should target cyclists' use of visibility aids, which is less than optimal in this population, as well as re-educating both groups regarding visibility issues.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic*
  • Adult
  • Automobile Driving*
  • Bicycling*
  • Data Collection
  • Female
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice*
  • Humans
  • Location Directories and Signs*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Social Perception
  • Visual Perception*