Florida Bicycle Accident Statistics

Florida Bicycle Accident Statistics

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that Florida had the highest rate of pedalcyclist deaths in 2015 and the highest fatality rate per million population. The total number of cyclists killed in traffic-related accidents in 2015 totaled 150, and the rate of cyclist fatalities per one million people was 7.4 (the national average is 2.5).

Florida has four of the deadliest cities for riders — Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville, and Miami. Bicyclist deaths increased by 260 percent between 2012 and 2014. Injuries from bicycle accidents increased by 24 percent during that period. In 2013, the Department of Transportation in Florida added nine full-time safety specialists for pedestrians and bicyclists around the state.

According to the FDOT, from 2011 through 2015, an average of 6,521 bicycle crashes occurred in Florida. During that period, an average of 6,116 people was injured each year, and 132 people died each year in bicycle accidents. The report, available online, breaks down the number of bicycle and pedestrian crashes, injuries, and fatalities by state.

Florida Bicycle Helmet Laws

Florida does not require adults to wear bicycle helmets. The law only requires riders under the age of 16 years to use a bicycle helmet when riding.

What Does Florida Do to Keep Bicyclists Safe Within the State?

The state’s Pedestrian & Bicycle Focused Initiative has several programs designed to promote safe bicycling in the state. The “Alert Today Alive Tomorrow” campaign was an advertising and educational plan to increase bicycle safety throughout Florida communities. One of its slogans, “Safety Doesn’t Happen by Accident,” is designed to remind everyone that they must take steps to protect themselves and others when they use Florida roads. Other campaigns include the Discover Your Role, One Foolish Act, Stop on Red, and White Cane Law projects.

Florida’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Strategic Safety Plan (PBSSP) for 2017 expands and supplements the 2016 plan to help protect pedestrians and cyclists throughout the state. The key program areas of the study include:

  • Collecting, evaluating, and analyzing data
  • Emergency and law enforcement services
  • Education for drivers
  • Legislation, policy, and regulation
  • Education programs
  • Outreach and communication
  • Program management

During the past five years, the FDOT and its regional and local partners have increased their focus on pedestrian and bicycle safety. For example, the Complete Streets Policy and Road Illumination Implementation adopted in September 2014 aims to make roads safe for all users, including pedestrians and cyclists. The FDOT also works to ensure that safe and convenient crossings and intersections are available and are equipped with safety features to protect bicyclists and pedestrians. The full 2017 plan is available online.

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