For those, like bicyclists, who travel Los Angeles streets virtually unprotected (with the exception of maybe a helmet and reflective gear), the streets pose enough dangers without the help of negligent motorists. While it may be no surprise to you when some drivers ignore the rules of the road, it may help you to know who is less likely to consider your safety.
The March edition of the Journal of Transport & Health published a study that found that drivers of expensive vehicles may be less likely to yield to pedestrians. The study involved a series of experiments that occurred on a weekend in June 2019.
Pedestrian participants of the experiments would make clear indications that they were about to cross a crosswalk and even make eye contact with the coming drivers. If it seemed as if the drivers would yield, then the participant would walk. Otherwise, the participant would wait. After examining Kelly Blue Book values, those behind the study found that the drivers who were less likely to yield were those in cars of higher value.
So, what does this mean for bicyclists?
With bike fatalities on the rise in California—455 deaths from 2016 to 2018—such studies bring important information to the world of transportation and recreation. You likely take the proper precautions to avoid an accident. But it cannot be said enough: whether you are an experienced rider, a casual rider in a rural community or you are commuting to work, it is dangerous to assume that a vehicle will obey the law and yield at the proper time.