In the city, vehicles pose a real threat to bicyclists. For California bicyclists, an accident with a motor vehicle can result in life-altering severe injuries and even death. Despite protective gear, cars still pose a danger. This is particularly true when the driver is not paying the bicyclist any attention. A study in Toronto, cited by Phys.org, showed that drivers are less likely to glance at bike lanes when turning right across a bike lane.
Drivers may have their attention spread thin. Often, they do not check over the shoulder for bicyclists and if they are familiar with the area are less likely to be cautious during a turn. The truth is that lack of attention is the cause of a majority of bicycle accidents.
On one hand, the lack of attention leads to bicycle accidents but worse over, is the attitude many drivers have towards bicyclists. According to Science Direct, drivers have negative views of bicyclists. Participants in a study self-reported seeing cyclists as less than human. This dehumanization has a correlation with aggression towards cyclists.
When a driver is aggressive towards another person or does not see the person as fully human, he or she may not have the empathy or compassion to drive cautiously. This can lead to negligent driving and serious consequences for bicyclists. The study suggests that aggression is not uncommon and yet most cyclists will not report aggression towards them. Hostile attitudes, however, can make the difference in one person’s life. There is a possibility that to put a face to cyclists, the country may be able to curb some of the aggression towards bicyclists.