Both parties at fault in vehicle-bicycle crashes, study says

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The finger pointing has gone on for years in Minneapolis: Drivers claim bicyclists ignore the rules of the road and bicyclists claim drivers simply don't know how to drive.

But an analysis on Minneapolis crash data from a 10-year period shows both parties are equally to blame, the Star Tribune reports.

From 2000 to 2010, there was an average of 270 reported bike-motor vehicle crashes each year. Biker actions contributed to a crash in 59 percent of collisions, compared to almost 64 percent for drivers. In some cases, it was determined both parties were at fault.

The study shows crashes often occur because drivers don't see or yield to bicyclists, or bikers behave unpredictably and ignore signals to stop or use lanes incorrectly.

FOX9 points out that bicycle commuters have increased over the years, but the number of bicycle-vehicle crashes have remained relatively flat. This is likely a result of practices by the city that are proving to be effective such as continuing bike markings through congested areas.

Ethan Frawley, president of the Minneapolis Bike Coalition, tells the Star Tribune that cyclists are more likely to ride in a predictable manner if they hace a place to ride.

Click here for more information on the Minneapolis Bicycling Program.

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