Cyclist protection, Urban roads
Cyclist pro­tec­tion

Acci­dents bet­ween cars and cyclists in dri­ve­ways

Are accidents between cars and cyclists in driveways supposedly unimportant? In order to investigate this question, the German Insurers Accident Research has examined accidents of this type as part of a study.

The analysis of 4,682 crashes with personal injury from several federal states in Germany in 2019 found that crashes in driveways points accounted for 4 percent of fatalities, 12 percent of serious injuries, and 15 percent of slight injuries in all car/bicycle crashes. The most common causes of accidents in driveways are errors when mistakes made when entering the flow of traffic (32 %) or mistakes when turning (9 % to the left, 7 % to the right).

With additional In-depth analyses using the insurers' accident database (UDB), it was possible to gain further insights into these accidents:

  • About 18% of the accidents and 15% of all seriously injured and killed bicyclists in the investigated group of cases (n=615 accidents) took place in driveways. The cyclists were always injured and most of them seriously.
  • In more than half of the relevant cases (n=114), the car drove forward out of the property. For these accidents, the ranking of the most frequent property types showed that - if no vans were taken into account - gas stations and private parking lots were frequently represented with 26% each.
  • The analyses also showed that structural visibility restrictions - mostly in the form of hedges and shrubbery - play a notable role in causing accidents; these accounted for about half of the cases involving forward-exiting cars or a quarter of all accidents at driveways to properties.

In terms of possible counter-measures, autonomous emergency braking systems (AEB) with detection of cyclists are the first option, in addition to infrastructure and behavior-based measures. It was shown that only an improved system (AEB+), in which the sensors are not disturbed by structural visual obstacles, can achieve a higher safety benefit in the form of 29 percent avoidable accidents.

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