Some companies have implemented ‘bike to work’ day to encourage their employees to cut down on using gas-guzzling vehicles such as their cars and motor-vehicles, as well as to encourage exercise and movement for their employees who may be sitting most of their workday. Federal highways reportedly spent around $915.8 million this year on bike- and pedestrian-related improvements. This is a huge push for cyclists and scooter-goers to utilize these pathways instead of their cars. Especially for people who live within a reasonable distance from their work or public transportation, there could be some hefty incentives from companies who support this lifestyle to get their employees out of their cars and onto a bike.
One cyclist in Los Angeles says he started his own bike-to-work gang. He leads what he refers to as a ‘bike train’ every day with a group of workers to create a sense of safety and community for him and his fellow commuters. Many people may be more inclined to take an eco-friendly transportation option if they were in a group or with friends. Still, despite individual’s attempt at camaraderie and state-wide funding for safe bikeways, we have seen a decline in overall cycling. According to the bureau’s latest American Community Survey, the national percentage of people who say they use a bike to get to work fell by 3.2% from 2016 to 2017, resulting in an average of 836,569 commuters. City-specific statistics saw a 19.9% decrease in San Francisco (which is fourth on the national list of most popular cities to ride bikes to work in), 11.4% in New Orleans (which falls in fifth place) and 20.5% in Seattle (sixth place) over the same one-year time period of 2016 to 2017. Long Beach, California, on the other hand, saw a 23.1% increase and has around 11,000 members in their bike-sharing program.
What is causing the decline is a mystery. With so many new, affordable options to get around with – from e-bikes to e-scooters – it’s unknown as to why people are not more inclined to use them. Especially with cities pouring millions of dollars into creating bike-safe infrastructures, there should be a push to get outdoors and move with the community.
When riding in groups, it is important to remain alert. Never assume that someone else will warn you about a hazard or oncoming vehicle. Do your part to be safe – wear a helmet, use reflective gear when necessary and always use signals.
If you have questions about safe cycling in your area, check out the rest of our blogs or our Cyclists’ Rights page. If you find yourself injured or with a personal injury claim on your hands from a bicycle accident, find yourself an experienced and knowledgeable attorney such as those at Pattenaude Law.