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Concerns Heat Up Over Bicycles & Cars Sharing Roads

Concerns and uncertainty continue to propagate throughout Vancouver and Canada about bicycle safety and the ability for bikes and cars to share roads harmoniously, as The Globe and Mail studies in one of their latest news stories.

As more bike lanes and increased advocacy for bicycle safety gradually ramp up across the country, municipal governments continue to push for more to be done, according to the report. Currently, at least five cities in Canada each have over 200 kilometres of on-street and off-street bike lanes, including Vancouver, which claims 289 as of 2015. Calgary leads the way with over 1,000 kilometres of bike lanes.

But drivers and local businesses attest to hardships as a result of more bike lanes. The Globe story mentions at least one failed Vancouver petition to curb the number of new bike lanes in the city.

Drivers claim in the story that they feel increasingly neglected by more local laws that protect bicyclists from accidents and personal injuries, suggesting that the laws encourage bicyclists to ignore right-of-ways and traffic signals. Storefront businesses argue that bike lanes cutback on street parking and therefore reduce their walk-in traffic.

However, the story also points out academic research that found separated bike lanes statistically reduce the risk of injuries to cyclists by almost 90 percentage points. That same risk rate drops by a third for non-separated lanes on streets with car parking and by a half on streets without car parking.

Car accidents that injure bicyclists are still a serious concern throughout Metro Vancouver and the province as a whole. The five-year annual average in B.C. since 2011 of the number of such incidents is approximately 1,400.

If you are a bicyclist injured in an accident in B.C., you’ll want experienced legal professionals on your side to fight for your rights. Call BLW Lawyers today at 604-689-3883 or email us at info@BLWlawyers.com for a free consultation.

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