Se habla español


Bicycle Accident Costs On The Rise

Home » Bicycle Accident Costs On The Rise
September 06, 2017
Edward Smith

Bicycle Accident Costs On The Rise
Bicycle Accident Costs On The Rise

I’m Ed Smith, a Benicia car accident lawyer. According to a report from the University of California based on a study done at UC San Francisco, bicycle riding has seen a large jump in popularity in recent years. However, the spike in popularity has led to an increase in bicycle accidents, and medical costs related to non-fatal bike collisions are climbing by about $789 million per year.

The Study

The study looked at data from a period of 17 years and found that the combined medical costs of fatal and non-fatal accidents came out to $237 billion. Surprisingly, the same costs were over 24.4 billion during 2013 alone. This figure is about twice as much as all medical expenses and other costs involved in occupational illnesses in the same year.

The study also found that, out of the 3.8 million non-fatal injuries and 9,839 deaths resulting from bicycle accidents from 1997 to 2013, three-quarters of the associated costs were due to injuries received by male cyclists.

Changing Trends

UCSF medical student and report author Thomas W. Gaither told reporters that bicycle injury costs have “risen steadily since 1997” and that there has been a “significant increase” in hospital admissions and emergency department visits, especially among older men.

Gaither noted that in past years, many cycling injuries happened because of non-street incidents. However, Gaither pointed out, injuries resulting from a collision with a motor vehicle have come to represent the majority of bicycle injury medical costs. Gaither explained that crashes involving motor vehicles increase the speed of collisions and, because of this, the severity of injuries is increased as well.


The study used data taken from the U.S. National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, cost estimates listed in the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s cost model for injuries, and data from the fatal incident section of the National Vital Statistics System. The costs associated with accidents were related to a wide variety of factors including emergency department bills, lost income, productivity loss, loss of quality of life, rehabilitation costs, and more.

Key Findings

Among the key findings of the report were these statistics:

  • The cost of bicycle injuries during the period of study was $28 billion for fatal and $209 billion for non-fatal injuries.
  • Annual expenses increased by 23 percent for fatal and 137 percent for non-fatal injuries during the period of study
  • Bicycling fatalities increased by an average of 19 deaths per year
  • Older cyclists made up a large portion of total expenses through time and a larger portion of inpatient costs related to admission.

Staying Safe

Although accidents are becoming more frequent, there are things that cyclists and motorists can do to avoid traumatic injuries. Cyclists can help by wearing bright clothing, riding predictably, and following the rules of the road as if they were a normal motor vehicle. Motorists can help avoid injuries by leaving cyclists enough room to maneuver, driving cautiously, and keeping their attention on the road.

More from Benicia Accident Lawyer, Ed Smith:

Benicia Car Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Benicia car accident lawyer. If you’ve been injured by a motor vehicle, call me at (707) 564-1900 so I can give you some free and friendly advice. Those living outside the area code can use (800) 404-5400, without toll.

Since 1982, I have assisted Benicia residents who have wrongful death and personal injury claims in recovering what they are owed.

My Yelp, Avvo, and Google profiles include comments and reviews from my clients.

I’m in Million Dollar Advocates Forum, the forum for U.S. trial lawyers with previous settlements or verdicts valued at a minimum of $1 Million Dollars.

View our Past Settlements and Verdicts at this page.

I founded, the leading site in Northern CA for valuable auto accident and personal injury information.

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons, Bike & Car Accident – Personal Injury by LosAngeles PersonalInjuryAttorney. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license.

:ms rey cs [685] cv