Statistical report – Pedal cyclist killed and seriously injured (KSI) casualties in Northern Ireland, 2014-2018

Date published: 04 June 2020

Pedal cyclist killed and seriously injured (KSI) casualties in Northern Ireland, 2014-2018 is now available.

DRD statistics publication

This bespoke analysis was commissioned by Promotion and Outreach Branch, DFI, and supplements the NI Road Safety Strategy (NIRSS) to 2020 Annual Statistical Report.  

Key points

Trend Information

  • In the early years of the NI Road Safety Strategy (NIRSS) to 2020, pedal cyclist KSI casualty numbers were fairly stable, falling in and around the baseline of 30. In 2010, casualty numbers increased by 53%, and despite large fluctuations, they have largely remained at this increased level. The annual average number of pedal cyclist KSI casualties in 2014-2018 (53) is 74% greater than the 2004-2008 baseline average.
  • In the five years 2014-2018 there were a total of 265 pedal cyclist KSI casualties, accounting for 6% of all KSIs. The proportion steadily increased from the NIRSS strategy baseline (2% in 2004-2008), until the five most recent five-year time periods, all of which reported between 6% and 7%.
  • As reported in the Travel Survey for Northern Ireland, pedal cyclist miles travelled account for just 1% of all miles travelled per person per year. Pedal cyclist KSI casualties (6%) are therefore over-represented in road traffic collision statistics – and this yields insight as to why cyclists are deemed a vulnerable road user.

Pedal cyclist KSI casualty Profile

In 2014-2018:

  • Most pedal cyclist KSIs were male - In 2014-2018, 85% (226) were male compared with 15% (39) female, and proportions are virtually unchanged since the baseline. Data from the Travel Survey for Northern Ireland (TSNI) show that in the last five years, approximately 85% of all miles cycled are by males and it is therefore unsurprising that the vast majority of pedal cyclist KSIs are male.
  • Cyclists aged 35-49 reported the greatest numbers of pedal cyclist KSIs in 2014-2018 (99, or 37%), with those in the age group 50-64 reporting a further 64 (24%). Data from the TSNI show that in the last five years, the profile of total miles cycled by age group matches closely the profile of pedal cyclist KSIs, with no groups under- or over-represented.
  • Almost one fifth (18%) of all pedal cyclist KSI casualties injured in the last five years occurred between the hours of 9am and 1pm on a Saturday or Sunday.
  • Analysis of pedal cyclist KSI casualties by month of the year reveals that numbers increased in the summer months, with July and August recording the greatest numbers of pedal cyclist KSIs (69, or 26%).
  • The most frequently reported principal causation of pedal cyclist KSIs was ‘Inattention or attention diverted’, which accounted for just under one-fifth (18%) of all pedal cyclist KSIs.
  • Three-in-ten (31%) pedal cyclist KSI casualties were responsible for the collisions in which they were injured.
  • Three-fifths (62%) of pedal cyclist KSI casualties occurred on urban roads (i.e. roads with a speed limit less than or equal to 40mph), with a further 32% occurring on rural roads (those with speed limit greater than 40mph, excluding motorways and dual carriageways).  In comparison, a much smaller proportion of all KSI casualties occurred on urban roads (41%), and over half (54%) occurred on rural roads.
  • Analysis of junction detail for pedal cyclist KSI casualties show that two-in-five (41%) occurred at a T or staggered junction.

Cycling behaviours – Travel Survey for NI (TSNI), 2016-2018

  • Nearly one quarter of respondents (24%) had cycled in the last 12 months. Of those who had cycled in the last 12 months, more than two fifths (43%) had cycled once a week or more and an additional 27% cycled at least once a month (but less than once a week). One-in-seven (14%) reported that they cycle every day, more than three times as many as those who only cycle once a year (4%).
  • Those who had cycled in the last 12 months were then asked what would encourage them to cycle more often. The top responses were ‘More cycle lanes’ (37%), ‘Better weather’ (36%) and ‘Cycle lanes separated from roads’ (32%). Just under three-in-ten (29%) said ‘More pleasant cycling routes’; and 28% said ‘Safer cycling routes (e.g. more markings, signs to distinguish cycle lanes).
  • The most common reason cited for feeling unsafe while cycling was that there was heavy traffic, with 55% of respondents giving this answer. Just under half (48%) felt unsafe because of motorists driving without consideration of cyclists (e.g. dangerous overtaking). Other common reasons included buses or lorries on the road (39%), poor road condition (38%), and traffic travelling above the speed limit (35%).

Notes to editors: 

  1. Pedal cyclist killed and seriously injured (KSI) casualties, 2014-2018 is the eighth in the problem profile series, and is an update of the previous profile of pedal cyclist casualties in 2002-2012.  Previous profiles on rural roads, cyclists, motorcyclists, pedestrians, drink-driving and older drivers can be found on the ASRB website:
  2. The majority of the data within the report derives from the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) Road Traffic Collision Statistics, and is typically based on the period 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2018. The report first looks at the overall trend in pedal cyclist KSI casualty numbers from a 2004-2008 baseline until 2018. The profile of cyclist KSIs in 2014-2018 is then examined (age, gender), followed by analysis of when and where pedal cyclist collisions occur, principal cause of collision, and who is deemed responsible. A series of maps showing areas with the greatest number of cyclist KSIs is also included.
  3. Cycling data from the 2016-2018 Travel Survey for NI (TSNI) are also presented: cycling frequency, reasons why cyclists feel unsafe when cycling on the road, and what would encourage people to cycle more often. A total of 5,344 people responded to the 2016-2018 TSNI.
  4. The Department will use the information presented in this publication to support policy development. The report provides departmental officials with the current picture of pedal cyclist KSI casualties, and provides evidence to allow them to consider the best ways to try to reduce casualty numbers.
  5. Further information and electronic copies of Pedal cyclist killed and seriously injured (KSI) casualties in Northern Ireland, 2014-2018 are available at:
  6. Additional Information

For more information relating to this publication, including additional analysis, breakdowns of data, or alternative formats please contact:

Analysis, Statistics and Research Branch,
Room 4.13c,
Clarence Court,
10 - 18 Adelaide Street,


  1. All media queries should be directed to the Department for Infrastructure Press Office at:
  2. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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