Many people say that they do not cycle because they are worried about the risk. But consider the facts:
- The actual risk of cycling is small -one cyclist death per 33 million kilometres of cycling. This distance would take the average cyclist 21,000 years to cycle.
- Cycle casualties are declining: in 2004 deaths had declined to 134 from the 1994-98 average of 186 and all casualties among cyclists was down from 24,385 to 16,648 respectively.
- Off road routes are safer, and use is growing rapidly. Cycling trips on the National Cycle Network have grown year on year since it began in 1995. In 2004 there were 100.2 million cycle trips, an 11.1% increase since 2003, including increased usage due to new routes.
- A sedentary lifestyle poses clear risks to our health: in 2003 there were 57,000 cardiovascular disease deaths and over 10,000 cancer deaths that could be attributed to physical inactivity. In the same year 113 cyclists were killed on the road.
* Sustrans (2005) The National Cycle Network. Route User Monitoring Report to end of 2004, Bristol: Sustrans