Anyone who has ridden a bicycle around Austin on a regular basis knows the feeling of a near miss.
In my 15 or so years of pedaling to work, I’ve come close to getting hit by a car several times. I’ve also been yelled at, spit on and flipped off, but that’s another story. I still love to bike to work, and it helps keep me fit and happy – two things I don’t get from getting stuck in traffic when I drive my car down MoPac Boulevard.
A law firm based in Chicago recently compiled statistics on the most dangerous stretches or urban roads for cyclists. In Austin, Guadalupe Street between West Cesar Chavez Street and North Lamar Boulevard ranked as the most dangerous roadway.
The list was based on bike collisions, injuries and fatalities, and is based on somewhat stale information – data circa 2015 from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, for cities with populations of 500,000 or more. It also considered hazards like narrow shoulders and roads without bike lanes.
Still, it’s worth a look. Nearly half a million bicyclists are injured or killed on American roads every year, according to the study.
Albuquerque recorded the most cyclist fatalities, with 8.94 deaths per million people, followed by Tucson, with 7.52 per million. Dallas and Indianapolis had the lowest rates – 0.77 per million people and 1.17 fatalities per million. (But perhaps that’s because fewer people in Dallas ride bikes? No context in this study.)
Austin comes in 20th, with 2.15 fatalities per million. And remember, this is for a few years ago. Here’s a complete list:
Fatality Rate per 1 millionAlbuquerque 8.94Tucson 7.52Las Vegas 6.41Phoenix 5.12San Jose 4.87Columbus 4.71San Francisco 4.63Memphis 4.57Philadelphia 4.47Los Angeles 4.03Jacksonville 3.46Louisville 3.25Portland 3.16Denver 2.93San Antonio 2.72Chicago 2.57Charlotte 2.42Houston 2.18San Diego 2.15Austin 2.15Fresno 1.92Milwaukee 1.67Baltimore 1.61New York 1.52Washington 1.49Detroit 1.48Seattle 1.46Fort Worth 1.2Indianapolis 1.17Dallas 0.77Oklahoma City 0Nashville 0El Paso 0Boston 0
To see the most dangerous stretches of roadway in cities across America, go here.