How dangerous is cycling?

The number of people visiting this blog seems to be on the increase, despite the fact I haven’t updated it for quite some time and I haven’t cycled to work for more than a month (owing to a chest infection and then a temporary move out of home while half my flat is refurbished). I’m hoping to be back on the bike in a week’s time when I finally get to move back home and take my bike out of storage.

In the meantime, if you’re a new visitor — and there seems to be plenty of you judging by my site stats these past few weeks — do feel free to introduce yourself in the comments. I’m always happy to hear from new readers, especially if you’re a newbie cyclist or considering taking it up.

Finally, there was a great article in the June 27 edition of The Independent about the state of cycling in the UK. This bit piqued by interest:

So how dangerous is cycling?

Statistically becoming much less so as more people take to two wheels.
Strength in numbers is a principal that cycling enshrines. In 2007 the
number of cyclists killed or injured on London’s roads was 19 per cent down
on 1994 – when the number of journeys by bike was half what it is today. The
signs are that motorists are adjusting their behaviour in response to the
increase in cycling activity around them, and cyclists are learning the art
of survival.

Deaths while cycling always attract publicity, but remain extremely rare when
put in the context of the millions of cycle journeys made each year. There
were 19 cyclists killed on London’s roads in 2006, 15 last year. Most
cyclist deaths occur when vehicles – particularly lorries – turn left
without the driver realising that there is a cyclist on their inside, with a
disproportionate number of women cyclists falling victim. Publicity
campaigns have targeted the danger and the fact that the London fatality
figure is dropping suggests that the message is getting through.

As cycle campaigners regularly point out, the benefits of cycling far outweigh
the risks, and now, it seems, the Government is joining the chorus.

You can read the full article here. [Thanks to Tlatet for the heads up.]