There's Been A Frightening Jump In Bicycle Related Deaths On Australian Roads

Photo: Phil Walter/GETTY

Almost every city road user has a near miss story to tell.

Drivers say the cyclists take crazy risks weaving in and out of the traffic.

The cyclists say car drivers just don’t have a clue about road rules.

But there’s now no doubt that Australia’s roads are getting more dangerous each year for cyclists.

The number of cyclists who died in road accidents jumped by more than 50 per cent in 2013, according to official statistics released today.

Take, for example, Sydney entrepreneur Casey Kinnaird who died yesterday. The 35-year-old’s bicycle and a car collided head on at the weekend. She died in hospital three days later.

There’s a tribute to the bubbly Casey from the League of Extraordinary Women, a business group.

Casey Kinnaird

And in South Australia today a judge, Anne Bampton, lost her driver’s licence and was fined $1,300 after she hit a cyclist while under the influence of alcohol.

While the the national road toll overall fell more than 8 per cent to 1,193 deaths, the number of cyclists who died jumped to 50 from 33 the year before.

This means the number of cyclist deaths has risen on average by 8.5 per cent each of the last five years.

Looking at the overall national road toll, the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics says the rate of annual deaths per 100,000 population stands at 5.2.

Compared to the figure for the 12-monthly period ending December 2012, this is a 10.1 per cent reduction.

Current counts of road deaths are 17.0 per cent lower than five years ago, (2013 against 2008) and per population, the present annual rate of deaths is 23.7 per cent lower than five years ago

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