Officer Andrew Barclay of the CHP passed on more information about bicycle collisions that the CHP responds to:
- 1. 60-70% of those accidents are in West Marin.
- 2. 30% of the collisions are on the Golden Gate Bridge.
- The remaining 10% are scattered throughout Marin.
What does this tell us?
Remember that the CHP has jurisdiction over the freeways and unincorporated areas of the county. That is why we see them on West Marin roads out in the middle of nowhere.
It is no surprise that 60-70% of CHP accidents are in West Marin. The roads are dangerous enough to those that are familiar with them. Potholes, other cyclists, cars, animals. The cyclists that come from all over the world are less familiar with these dangers. Officer Barclay told me previously that this unfamiliarity is an accident factor that the CHP has recognized.
On the bridge you are riding with a variety of cyclists in tight quarters. There are tourists who are not wearing helmets and don’t know how to ride a bike. They are focused on the scenery, not the roadway. You also have serious bike commuters that are trying to beat their best time home and the casual cyclist just out to enjoy the day. I’ve been in a group of riders that moved along at 25 mph, passing tourists and slower moving bikes constantly. Not a normal situation.
I find that just reminding myself of the extra danger causes me to slow down a bit and use extra caution when passing slower riders.