Collisions involving pedal cyclists on Britain’s roads: establishing the causes

  • Published: TRL report PPR445, 2009
  • Authors: J. Knowles, S. Adams, R. Cuerden, T. Savill, S. Reid, and M. Tight
  • Date Added: 27 Jun 2013
  • Last Update: 25 Oct 2016
  • Format: html


This report provides an in-depth assessment of the key risk factors relating to cycling.


The work involved an international literature review and a detailed analysis of cyclist casualties in Great Britain, drawing on both national and in-depth databases of road collisions and cycling. The main source of the casualty data was the national STATS19 injury and accident data for 1994-2007. Contributory factors have been recorded nationally as part of the STATS19 system from 2005 and analyses of these data are also reported. The main source of cycling activity data was the National Travel Survey (NTS) of 2006 (the most recent data available at the time of analysis).

Key Findings:

  • In 2008, 115 pedal cyclists were killed and 2,450 reported as seriously injured onBritain’s roads, accounting for 9 per cent of all killed or seriously injured (KSI) road casualties (DfT 2009).

  • The number of cyclists KSI has steadily increased in recent years, with the figure for 2008 being 11 per cent higher than for 2004.

  • However, the number of cyclists killed and injured makes no allowance for the number of people cycling or the distance travelled.

  • The number of KSI per 100 million KM travelled (as measured by the National Road Traffic Survey) was fairly constant between 2002 and 2006 but increased in 2007.


At the time the analyses were undertaken, the 2008 data was unavailable and so the majority of the report refers to data up to 2007.