Better insight into bicycle accidents through access to more data

The municipality of Amsterdam will get access to anonymized data on traffic accidents from the Regional Ambulance Facility. These give us more insight into (cycling) accidents in the city. Before, accident information was only based on police reports, which are not complete. Accidents with cyclists and pedestrians are often not attended by the police and thus not reported.

The new registration has great advantages. “From mid-December, we will receive every quarter a detailed overview of all locations where accidents occurred that were attended by an ambulance,” says Sietze Faber, road safety policy advisor. ‘We can see where accidents take place, which vehicles were involved and in which age group the victim falls. We also expect to gain better insight into the role of e-bikes in accidents as they are registered as a separate category.'

Even more insight
To further improve the registration of traffic accidents, we work on also getting information from the Emergency Departments of hospitals in the region. Then the (bicycle) accidents that where not attended by an ambulance will also be included.

Many more bicycle accidents than expected
For this initiative, the municipality is collaborating with VeiligheidNL, the knowledge centre on injury prevention. They already work for the provinces of Utrecht and Friesland, collecting the data and making them available in a dashboard. In both regions there turned out to be more bicycle accidents than reported in the police data.

Faber expects that the improved registration will mainly underline the urgency of bicycle safety policy. 'We will identify even more locations where adjustments are necessary. For example, we can also see whether many bicycle accidents occur somewhere without a collision with another road user. Then you can zoom in: why is that? Is there a dangerous curb? Is there a pole? Is the cycle path too narrow? Ultimately, it is often about how much space there is for cyclists and pedestrians. More space is something we are working hard on in our policy.'

Reporting point
The 'Amsterdam branch of the Cyclists' Union welcomes the new registration method. A year ago, the association set up a reporting point where people could report bicycle accidents. Reason for it was that the municipality did not have its registration in order. Some 310 accidents were reported in one year. Faber emphasizes that people can now also report unsafe situations themselves via 'public space reports' on the municipal website. about the improved registration


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