Bicycle Crashes and GPS Data

bikeA quick YouTube search of “dash cam” will elicit many returns of auto accidents captured on video.  Similarly, many motorcyclists utilize helmet-mounted cameras, such as Go-Pros to record any incidents.  More and more, bicyclists are following suit.  A cyclist injured in a crash could have been recording his or her ride via a GPS-enabled computer when the incident occurred. Modern technology enables a cyclist to record the following data from satellite navigation systems identical to those used in our vehicles:

  • Latitude and longitude
  • Elevation
  • Vehicle speed at a given instance
  • Average vehicle speed
  • Maximum vehicle speed
  • Total ride time
  • Distance traveled

Also, optional sensors may record:

  • Heart rate of rider
  • Power output of rider
  • Pedal cadence

There are several social media apps available via smart phone that use the phone’s GPS system – Strava is the name of one such app. Strava gives the option to record a ride directly from a rider’s smart phone or to download data regarding the ride from another GPS device, such as a Garmin, to Strava’s website. The app and website provide some entertaining competition for bicyclists.  

In the unfortunate case of a bicycle accident with such an app enabled, experts can analyze this downloadable data for use in investigation of the circumstances that lead to the incident.

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento bicycle accident attorney with the most informative and comprehensive accident site on the internet,  If you or someone you know has been injured in a bicycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, please feel free to call me for free and friendly advice at (916) 921-6400.  If you are outside of the Sacramento region, call toll free at (800) 404-5400.  Be sure to check our reviews at Yelp! and Avvo.

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