There’s an excellent post today over at Tom Vanderbilt’s How We Drive blog. In it, Vanderbilt addresses the widespread (and ludicrous) misconception that bicyclists somehow pose a greater threat to pedestrians than automobiles. He quotes the following from a Streetsblog interview with Manhattan D.A. candidate Leslie Crockett Snyder:
Snyder said that the biggest traffic safety complaint she hears from community leaders these days is not about reckless motorists but “bicyclists being dangerous” and “messengers running us over.” If she is elected DA, she invites livable streets advocates to educate her on the issues and “meet with me regularly and make sure I’m staying on top of it.”
To make his point, Vanderbilt cites statistics from a study conducted in London from 2001 to 2005 in which 535 pedestrians were killed by motorists and only 1 was killed by a bicyclist. He then goes on to discuss some of the possible reasons pedestrians continue to mistakenly believe bicyclists are a threat to their safety while ignoring the overwhelming dangers posed by motorists.