PRESS RELEASE

 

For immediate release
November 30, 2011

Contact
Matthew Norris
Tri-State Transportation Campaign
(856) 963-0236

 

Revised October 2012

New Analysis Identifies Most Dangerous Roads for Bicyclists in Southern New Jersey Counties

Advocacy group urges New Jersey Department of Transportation to fix dangerous roads  

Between 2001 and 2010, 7,8301 bicyclists were involved in crashes in eight Southern New Jersey counties (Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Ocean and Salem). During this period there were 60 bicyclist fatalities according to a new analysis by the Tri-State Transportation Campaign.

Cape May County is the most dangerous county for bicyclists, followed by Atlantic County and Cumberland County based on bicycle crashes per capita.

The analysis ranked the counties on bicyclist crash rate, finding the following:

Rank

County

Average Yearly Number of Bicycle Crashes, 2001-2010

Average Population

Bicyclist Crash Rate per 10,000 Residents

1

Cape May

80.6

99,796

8.08

2

Atlantic

133.1

263,551

5.05

3

Cumberland

60.4

151,668

3.98

4

Ocean

196.5

543,742

3.61

5

Camden

172.2

511,295

3.37

6

Salem

12.2

65,184

1.87

7

Burlington

81.2

436,064

1.86

8

Gloucester

46.8

271,481

1.72

 

 

 

 

 

n/a

All Counties

783

2,342,779

3.34

 

The organization also conducted a narrow analysis using data from 2008-2010 to determine particularly dangerous roadways for cyclists. The analysis shows that many crashes were clustered on specific roads. In addition, NJ 47 was one of Cape May, Cumberland and Gloucester Counties' most dangerous roads (50 crashes in these counties combined).

Almost all of the dangerous roads were arterials, a type of road that the Tri-State Transportation Campaign has found to be the most dangerous for pedestrians in the region as well. Arterial roads typically have two or more lanes in each direction and allow for travel speeds of 40 mph or greater.

The analysis's findings demonstrate the need for New Jersey to continue to examine the design of its streets, particularly the roads that have been shown to be hot spots for bicycle crashes. The percentage of bicycle crashes on these "hot spot" roads ranged from 13.4% to 29.9% of each county's total bicycle crashes.

NJDOT passed a statewide Complete Streets policy in December 2009 which requires new or rehabilitated roads to be built for all users, including walkers, cyclist, transit riders, and drivers.

"There is a clear demand for safe cycling routes in the state, yet most roads are still designed for only cars in mind,” said Matthew Norris, Tri-State Transportation Campaign's South Jersey Advocate. “We hope these numbers will help the New Jersey Department of Transportation and county officials fix these roadways to encourage healthier, more active lifestyles.”

“ The health benefits of bicycling far outweigh the dangers, but more should be done to improve safety on South Jersey roads. The Dutch who eschew adult helmet usage have a bicycle injury rate that is about 1/4 per mile traveled than the United States. This is because Dutch roads are designed to accommodate bicycles safely and motorists are held accountable for their actions. Tri-State’s data will help us work with State and local officials to prioritize bike safety improvements on southern New Jersey roads where they are needed the most," said John Boyle, research director at the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia.

"People need options for transportation. Not everyone drives a car, but our roads aren't accommodating to pedestrians and cyclists. They have every right to use the road but can't always do so safely. More attention needs to be paid to making our roadways not only safe, but inviting, so those who choose to travel by bike or on foot have their own established spaces can feel secure in using them,” said Patty Woodworth, owner of Action Wheels Bike Shop in Deptford.

County fact sheets and Google Maps can be found at http://tstc.org/njbiking.

The analysis found the following roads to be the most dangerous in each county:

 

County

Road (Percentage of Bicyclists Involved in Crashes, 2008-2010)

Number of Bicyclists Involved in Crashes on Most Dangerous Roads, 2008-2010

Atlantic

      • Atlantic Ave (14.4%)
      • US 40 (6.0%)

78

Burlington

      • Route 537 (7.3%)
      • US 130 (6.1%)
      • Burlington County 607 (5.2%)

33

Camden

      • US 30/White Horse Pike (6.1%)
      • NJ 168/Black Horse Pike (5.5%)
      • Route 561/Haddon Ave (4.4%)

79

Cape May

      • Cape May County 621/Pacific Ave/New Jersey Ave (12.2%)
      • Cape May County 619/West Ave (10.6%)
      • NJ 47 (7.1%)

76

Cumberland

      • Route 540/Landis Ave/Park Ave (14.8%)
      • NJ 47/Delsea Dr (13.4%)

40

Gloucester

      • NJ 45 (10.3%)
      • NJ 47 (8.9%)
      • US 322/South Black Horse Pike (6.9%)

38

Ocean

      • US 9 (11.2%)
      • NJ 35 (7.3%)
      • NJ 88 (5.7%)
      • Route 549 (5.5%)

199

Salem

      • NJ 49 (14.3%)
      • NJ 45 (8.6%)

8

1. Tri-State was unable to determine if 21 crash records (.27% of the total crashes) contain duplicate records. The actual number of total crashes may be slightly lower.

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The Tri-State Transportation Campaign is a non-profit organization working toward a more balanced, transit-friendly and equitable transportation system in Connecticut, New York and New Jersey.