Thursday, October 31, 2013

Good & Bad in the eyes of the elderly

A large group of people cycled through the town of Vught last Friday. Accompanied by the Vught alderman for traffic, a council member and the senior traffic policy maker. Together they were on a tour to visit good and bad cycling infrastructure. At least good and bad in the eyes of this very specific group of people cycling: the elderly. Dutch elderly people cycle a lot. There are more elderly than before and they cycle more often and also further. Sounds good, but it came with a price: more than half of all cycle deaths last year were people over the age of 65, an incredible figure! In 2012, 200 people cycling were killed in the Netherlands, but of those 200 no less than 108 were over the age of 65! It becomes even more mind-boggling when you consider that 60% of all bicycle crashes with serious injuries were single vehicle crashes. No motor vehicle, no other cyclists, not even a pedestrian was involved. Dutch elderly seem to just fall off their bicycles and they often sustain severe injuries or they even die. Dutch traffic experts are trying to find out what the cause of this all is. And once the cause is known if they can do something about it. Read on in Bicycle Dutch.

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