Cyclists like other motorists suffer injuries and make demands on 3rd party insurance. This paper by Hitchens and Palmer (2012), titled Characteristics of, and insurance payments for, injuries to cyclists in Tasmania, 1990–2010 published in Accident Analysis and Prevention in November 2012 adds to our understanding of the costs of those claims, costs which may be potentially reduced with a better understanding of preventative measures and their application.
The abstract from the paper can be found below and the full paper is available via my Dropbox folder.
To describe the characteristics and costs of injuries to cyclists resulting in a 3rd party insurance claim in Tasmania.
Data on injuries to cyclists were obtained from the Motor Accident Insurance Board (MAIB) for the period 1990–2010. Frequency and insurance costs of injuries to cyclists were compared to injuries incurred by other road users. Descriptive analyses of cycling injuries and insurance costs by year, age and sex of claimant, and type and location of injury are presented.
Annual costs of insurance claims by cyclists averaged AUD 3.9 million. There was a significant decrease in the frequency of claims made by all road users combined over the study period, but not for cyclists. Cycling injuries made up 2.0% of claims but accounted for 3.4% of the total costs and were among the road user groups with the highest mean costs per claim. Fractures (20.7%) were the most common cycling injury. Brain injuries led to the highest mean claim costs (AUD 1,559,032), and accounted for 66.8% of claim costs made by cyclists.
Mean costs per claim for cycling injuries are high compared to those made by most other road users. The costs of these injuries impose a substantial burden on insurance payers. The high costs and severity of claims by cyclists compared to other road users demonstrates the high vulnerability of cyclists, and lends support to increasing separation of cyclists from motor vehicles.
Your Turn To Talk
As a cyclist, thankfully I have not had to claim on 3rd party insurance. Have you? Care to share your experiences? Your thoughts on this paper and the implications for policy development? Please do share your thoughts by leaving a comment below