2015 Minnesota Bicycle Accident Statistics
The Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) issued its Annual Motor Vehicle Crash Report for 2015. The full report, along with the reports for previous years, can be found on its website.
According to the 2015 report, the state had 74,772 traffic crashes reported in 2015 that resulted in 411 deaths and 29,981 injuries. Of the 411 fatalities, 10 of those deaths involved a bicycle. That was the highest number of fatalities related to bicycle accidents in the past five years. The highest number of cyclist fatalities was recorded in 1977 (24 deaths).
In addition to the deaths, there were also 873 bicyclists injured in accidents during 2015. Of those injuries, 45 were reported as severely injured, 277 had moderate injuries, and 551 sustained minor injuries.
Minnesota Bicycle Helmet Laws
There is not a statewide bicycle helmet law in Minnesota.
Promoting Safe Bicycling in Minnesota
Several agencies, including the Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), the Department of Transportation (DOT), and the Minnesota Safety Council have programs and initiatives that help promote bicycle safety throughout the state.
The Minnesota Safety Council has a “Bike Safe, Bike Smart” website that provides printed materials and “How To” guides in addition to information for parents, kids, and communities related to safe bicycling. The Council seeks to promote bike safety and helmet use in all communities to keep rider’s safe when they are enjoying cycling.
The OTS has a Bike and Pedestrian Safety section on its website dedicated to providing information to riders and walkers. Resources and information on the website include:
- Safety tips for pedestrians and cyclists
- Rules of the road and laws pertaining to bicyclists and pedestrians
- Fitting a bicycle helmet correctly
- Child pedestrian safety curriculum
The DOT also has a specific section of its website devoted to bicycling. On this website, you can obtain a full copy of the state’s Bicycle Planning Study and Bicycle System Plan. The goals of the plan include:
- Construct and maintain safe facilities for cyclists of all ages to promote comfort and safety.
- Support the bicycling needs of local and regional communities.
- Partner with national, state, regional, and local agencies to develop a statewide bicycle network.
- Promote riding a bicycle as an alternative form of transportation in Minnesota.
Other information you can access on the DOT’s website includes information about bike routes and bicycle maps, educational resources, research information, updates on current projects, and information about bicycle and pedestrian traffic data.