Cycling experience makes for better drivers, suggests research
Cyclist-drivers are faster at spotting potential dangers on the road than those who only drive cars, according to new research.
Carried out by Dr Vanessa Beanland at the University of the Sunshine Coast, near Brisbane, Australia, and Lisa Hansen, of The Australian National University, Canberra, the study analysed a group of motorists aged between 30 and 50 who were split between those who had cycling experience and those who didn’t and carried out ‘situation awareness’ tests to see if motorists could spot changes in images featuring either a road sign, car, pedestrian, or bicycle.
The results show cyclist-drivers were significantly faster than drivers at identifying changes, with the effect being largest for bicycle and sign changes.
The news has been welcomed by leading UK cycling groups, who say that if more people cycled, then driving behaviour and attitudes towards road safety would improve.