Two transport modes that continue to grow in volume in urban areas are bikes and trucks. While this presents exciting opportunities for sustainable mobility and economic growth, it also raises concerns about safety.

A 2018 study by Pokorny et al., titled: Conflicts between bikes and trucks in urban areas—A survey of Norwegian cyclists surveyed cyclists about their experiences with trucks in urban areas. The results paint a clear picture:

  • Conflicts are frequent: Cyclists reported a high number of conflicts, particularly involving overtaking and right-turning [left-turning in Australia] trucks.
  • Visibility matters: Blind spots and size differences were identified as major risk factors.
  • Shared responsibility: While most cyclists placed blame on truck drivers, it’s crucial to remember that safety is a shared responsibility.

The risk of these crashes can be lessened using all the elements of the Safe System. Some examples include:

  • Vehicles – blind spot identification for Vulnerable Road Users
  • People – education and training for both drivers and riders
  • Infrastructure – separated cycling facilities
  • Speeds – slowing vehicles provides more opportunity to identify issues and react