I am trying to get hold of some figures for accident rates where either, ideally just cyclists or, just general road users & pedestrians, are involved in accidents (or reported near misses) because a motorist/cyclist has been using a mobile phone. I would like (if possible) to have information regarding Sweden and other countries where cell phone use is not banned, and in countries where it has been banned such as the UK.

As a cyclist who lived in the UK and now lives in Sweden I notice a considerable difference in my "near miss" rate, and the vast majority of my near misses here come from phone users (and bus drivers, but that was the same in GB!). If I can get some statistics I am going to look in to campaigning my local politician and having cycling friends in the area note down their near miss rates (how many kilometers per evasive action).

Examples of the sort of nice stats I'm looking for:

xx% of accidents involving cyclists in Sweden are suspected or proven to be due to one or more parties involved using a cell phone at the time of the accident.

Since banning the use of cell phones the overall rate of accidents involving cyclists has decreased by xx% in the UK, and those involving cell phones has decreased from aa% to bb%

  • 1
    I'd be surprised if these statistics are available with any decent level of accuracy (they are likely lumped into some other pedestrian fatality numbers or something). Also, comparing the statistics in a good manner is difficult given the type of roads, lighting and other factors that go into the accident rate is difficult (especially in different countries - the accident rate in Russia, for example, is not comparable with that of the UK due to the vastly different road rules (in practice)).
    – Batman
    Apr 14, 2014 at 21:26
  • This answer links to a bunch of different stats which might give you a start.
    – Móż
    Apr 14, 2014 at 22:01
  • If you come up with anything, perhaps you could write a blog post and share with us?
    – PeteH
    Apr 15, 2014 at 9:29
  • rospa.com/roadsafety/info/mobile_phone_report.pdf has some references, as does en.wikipedia.org/wiki/…, but nothing that would let you pick out specifically cyclists. And I doubt you'll find the UK ban significantly reducing accidents, because so many drivers ignore the law.
    – armb
    May 7, 2014 at 15:53
  • In the UK you rode on the left, in Sweden, you ride on the right. If a majority of drivers are phone users, you would expect a majority of near misses will involve phone using motorists. You may have a bias (possibly subcontious) against phone using motorists (I know I do) distorting your image of realality. All this is probably more causative to increased near miss rates than just motorists using cell phones.
    – mattnz
    Jul 3, 2014 at 1:55

1 Answer 1


As Batman has commented, I suspect getting the data down to this level is probably going to be quite hard. That said there is some Australian research which may be of interest to you. In particular a study undertaken in South Australia which looked at the circumstances surrounding crash involvement for a group of 61 bicycle riders involved in a collision with a motorised vehicle who were admitted to the Royal Adelaide Hospital over the period between January 1 2008 and December 31 2010. You can read a summary of this study on my site.

This descriptive study provides some insight into cyclists and motor vehicle interaction and adds to growing literature on the subject.



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