The safety of cycling children. Effect of the street environment

Lars Leden

Research output: Book/ReportReport


A field survey of about 14 000 schoolchildren between the ages of 6 and 16 has been conducted in five Swedish, one Norwegian and three Finnish towns. The schoolchildren described the road accidents they had been involved in over the past year.In addition, they drew on a map the route they had cycled the previous day and described places they thought were particularly dangerous in their neighbourhood.In the areas there were a total of slightly more than two thousand intersections and more than three thousand stretches of road.These have been inventoried and the number of schoolchildren cycling at each place has been calculated.The towns have lent assistance by providing details of the volume of motor traffic.The starting point for the project was to develop the model for classifying the safety standards of pedestrian and bicycle routes in residential neighbourhoods as described in TRÅD.TRÅD's description of the safety standard of a P/C path which crosses minor connecting roads seems to be less than satisfactory.On the whole, though, TRÅD appears to have achieved its objective.An alternative model, SESAM, is suggested.SESAM stands for the Swedish terms corresponding to interaction, no steep gradients, special phase for signalcontrolled bicycle crossings, separate motor traffic from P/C traffic and reduce motor vehicle speed.Interaction can be improved by, for example, locating bicycle crossings at an intersection immediately adjacent to the intersecting road, reducing the number of directions from which motor traffic arrives at an intersection, such as by limiting the number of approaches and exits or by prohibiting left turns, routing bicycle paths to cross streets with motor traffic on stretches of road instead of at intersections and improving sight conditions.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEspoo
PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Number of pages150
ISBN (Print)951-38-3436-0
Publication statusPublished - 1989
MoE publication typeNot Eligible

Publication series

SeriesTechnical Research Centre of Finland. Publications


  • traffic safety
  • motor vehicle accidents
  • injuries
  • children
  • bicycles
  • streets
  • speed
  • traffic flow


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