Revealed: Scotland’s worst cycling accident hotspots

Cycle car accident

League table ranked by accident severity published by leading charity 

22nd May 2017 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

A leading charity is calling for improved cycling infrastructure at junctions after research revealed roundabouts and T junctions are the main cycle collision hotspots in Scotland.

The findings, published by Sustrans’ Scottish Research Programme, are set to be presented at the Scottish Transport Applications and Research (STAR) Conference in Glasgow on Wednesday (24 May).

The paper identifies locations which had a relatively high number of collisions, compared to the amount of cycling activity in the area, between 2005 and 2014.

It also assessed the severity of cyclist causalities at each location and scored this against the population size in each area and the number of people in the vicinity who had reported they cycled to work in the 2011 Census.

Out of the top 20 ranked locations for cycle collisions in Scotland, the research found that 19 of the incidents occurred at a junction or within 20 meters of one.

Roundabouts appeared most frequently for cycling collisions, in eight of the 20 hotspot locations, whilst seven of the locations were at T or staggered junctions.

Commenting on the findings John Lauder, Sustrans Scotland national director said: “Safety is often cited as the main reason why people don’t cycle for more of the journeys they make every day.

"This research highlights the importance of having high quality cycling infrastructure in place at junctions, so that collisions can be prevented.

RankJunctionAreaCollisions (weighted by severity)
1A761 / Arkleston RoadPaisley3
2A726 / Parkway roundaboutNear Erskine4
3A199 / B1361 / A6094 roundaboutWallyford3
4B959 / Robertson StreetDundee4
5Barrhead Road / Peat Road / Braidcraft Road roundaboutGlasgow3
6Glasgow Road / Viewlands RoadPerth3
7A8 / Cathedral StreetGlasgow3
8High StreetTranent3
9Main Street / B6482 / Newbattle Road mini roundaboutsNewtongrange3
10Mearns Road / A727Clarkston3

“We know that better cycle infrastructure increases the feeling of safety and ultimately the number of people on bikes. Through our Community Links, Street Design and National Cycle Network funding, which is provided by Transport Scotland, Sustrans helps to ensure this happens. 

Although the report found that Edinburgh recorded the locations with the highest number of cycle collisions over the nine year period, once researchers took into account the relative number of cyclists in an area and the severity of the collisions, they found that a greater number of hotspots were based in or around greater Glasgow.

This was because even though the greater Glasgow area had a higher urban population, the proportion of people who cycled to work was low in comparison.

Research suggests that doubling cycling leads to a reduction in the risks of cycling by around a third, partly because drivers have increased awareness of people on bikes and because an area is more likely to have cycling infrastructure.

Lauder added: “Put quite simply: the more people in a place who cycle, the safer it becomes for everyone.”