2014 and 2015 Arizona Bicyclist Fatalities

With the sharp increase in traffic fatalities in 2015 (35,092 a 7.2% increase) — this is getting some extra attention, e.g. the Fastlane blog said on Aug 29, 2016: “2015 Traffic Fatalities Data Has Just Been Released: A Call to Action to Download and Analyze”. The big data news here is that PBCAT data has reappeared, and the 2014 and 2015 datasets released today both have a PBtable. PBCAT data is important because it give much more granular information about bicyclist (and pedestrian) fatalities.

Fatality Grid

It is always difficult to discern trends on a small, (relatively) low frequency event, so are best viewed one-by-one.

The grid of Arizona Bicyclist fatalities from 2009 onward has been updated with the FARS/PBCAT information, the grid is organized as one worksheet (“tab”) per year, beginning in 2009:

Remarks about 2015

There are no discrepancies between ASDM and FARS.

There were 29 bicyclist fatalities per ADOTs 2015 Crash Facts, and these matched exactly one-for-one both with ASDM and FARS.

There were, however, two incidents which appear odd; indicating mis-coding of some sort. E.g. the driver in both instances was “114 years old/Unspecified gender”, indicating the driver was not present, however the hit-and-run flag was not set. There is also in both cases no location information… see more info here.

Remarks about 2014

There were several discrepancies between ASDM and FARS for year 2014.

There were 28 bicyclist fatalities per ADOTs 2014 Crash Facts, however, 2015 Crash Facts indicates there were 29 fatalities in 2014 (Table 7-11, five-year history), indicating the dataset was updated between June 1, 2014 and June 1, 2015. (I do not get updates from ADOT, the ASDM dataset is frozen in time, for me, on June 1 of whatever year)

ASDM lists an incident occurring on 2/24/2014, but the incident is not in FARS. The most likely conclusion is this was not a bicyclist traffic fatality.

But wait…. These two don’t appear in ASDM, but do appear in FARS:

  • FARS case 40723; nighttime 7/10/2014 Mesa. Broadway near Dobson; wrong-way bicyclist in travel lane; head-on collision.
  • FARS case 40720; evening 10/10/2014 Phoenix. Indian School & 26th St; Bicyclist Ride Through – Sign-Controlled Intersection

(how these escaped being included in the dataset released June 1, 2015 is beyond me)

Anyway — 28 minus 1 plus 2 = 29.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *