2015 Illinois Bicycle Accident Statistics
The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) reports that 313,316 motor vehicle crashes occurred within the state during 2015. Crashes involving pedalcyclists accounted for 1.1 percent of these crashes. During 2015, 91,675 were injured, and 998 people were killed in traffic-related accidents statewide.
Pedalcyclists were involved in 3,286 traffic accidents resulting in 26 deaths, 3,165 injuries, and 453 incapacitating injuries. The age group sustaining the highest number of injuries from bicycle accidents were young adults between the ages of 25 to 34 years followed by young people 15 to 18 years of age.
Illinois Bicycle Helmet Laws
The state does not have a mandatory bicycle helmet law; however, you should check with your local government to determine if local laws require helmets to be work when riding within city limits. Several areas, including Barrington, Chicago, Cicero, Inverness, Libertyville, and Skokie, may have some requirements related to bicycle helmets.
Safety and Education Programs in Illinois for Bicyclists
There are several agencies and entities that have developed safety plans and educational resources to promote safe bicycling throughout the state. For example, the University of Illinois has a Campus Bicycle Plan to promote safe cycling for students and visitors while on campus. The program focuses on education, engineering, enforcement, encouragement, planning, and evaluation.
The IDOT has a statewide Bike Transportation Plan as part of its long-range transportation plan for the state. The plan contains over 200 recommendations for accommodating cyclists throughout the state, including implementing a multimodal transportation system for Illinois that is safe and sustainable for all users. More information about the plan, including an executive summary, visions, goals, research, and recommendations can be found on IDOT’s website.
The IDOT also has a Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program to encourage and enable students to ride their bicycles or walk to school. The program also seeks to make bicycling and walking to school a safe and appealing form of transportation to promote a healthy lifestyle for children. As part of its goal to improve the safety and lives of all Illinois citizens, the Illinois State Police’s Safety Education Unit can present programs to various community groups, social clubs, and schools about bike safety.
Other campaigns, programs, and education materials the state has initiated or produced to promote safe bicycling include:
- Share the Road Campaign
- Bicycle Safety Reporting
- Bicycle Safety Statute
- Safe Roads for Bicycling
- Bicycle Safety Brochure
- Bicycle Rules of the Road
- Kids on Bikes in Illinois
- Safe Bicycling in Illinois
Detailed information and links to all resources can be found on the state’s website.