Much like the sighting of a unicorn female bicycle riders along the streets of London Ontario continue to be rare. This view shows a female rider in late April near the busy intersection of Wellington Road and Bradley Ave in south London. Analysis by Gorski Consulting showed that just over 10% of observed riders in the first 6 months of 2024 were female.

Gorski Consulting has continued to gather observations of cyclists along the streets of London, Ontario in 2024. While some riders and residents express concern about cyclist safety no one is actually conducting any objective observations to provide the basis for those concerns. The table below shows the latest cyclist observation data for the first six months of 2024.

As can be seen in the above table a total of 525 cyclist observations were made by Gorski Consulting in the first six moths of 2024. The observations were rather low in the first 4 months of the year and then the numbers increased dramatically in May and June. The percentage of female riders was 10.49%. The numbers of persons riding, walking or stopped on City sidewalks was 63.34% for males and 83.33% for females. The female percentages are likely not reliable because of the very small numbers of observations (only 54).

The trends shown in the above table are similar to what has been observed in previous years. For example the percentage of female riders in previous years is noted below:

2021 = 12.54%

2022 = 13.11%

2023 = 14.60%

While the percentage of females riders appeared to be rising slightly the 10.49% in 2024 is disappointing so far.

The numbers of cyclists observed on City sidewalks has also been generally above 50% as noted below.

2021: Male 64.89%, Female 64.94%

2022: Male 65.25%, Female 72.59%

2023: Male 66.79%, Female 65.22%

The City of London obtains data from an increased number of its cyclist counters imbedded in the pavement of various cycling tracks and lanes but no one has examined the accuracy of those counts. Cyclists are observed passing by the counters outside of the range of their sensors and it is also unknown how well the sensors can separate cyclists from other traffic units. And there is no information about the characteristics of the cyclists that are counted.

The City of London is also increasing the number of video cameras permanently installed at select intersections and it is unknown what type of analysis is conducted to obtain details of cyclist characteristics. The City has also increased the number of portable video systems, also positioned at select intersections.

In late March, 2024 an unusually large number of portable video installations were observed in south London at various intersections. Examples of these are shown in several photos below.

View of “Scout” portable video hardware installed at the intersection of Bradley Ave and Millbank Drive in London on March 20, 2024.
View of “Scout” portable video hardware installed at the intersection of Bradley Ave and Adelaide Street in London on May 20, 2024.
View of “Scout” portable video hardware installed on Southdale Road between the two legs of Millbank Drive in London on March 26, 2024.
View of “Scout” portable video hardware installed at Southdale Road and Pond Mills Road in London on March 26, 2024.
View of “Scout” portable video hardware installed at the intersection of Southdale Road and Wharncliffe Road in London on March 27, 2024.

The “Scout” video hardware is operated by a private vendor who appears to have been hired by the City of London to conduct detailed video documentations at the noted intersections. Often only one such pole is installed per intersection yet on several occasions this spring two poles were installed at diagonal positions at an intersection. Also such hardware is normally installed for a 24-hour period but in several instances such as on Southdale and Millbank the hardware remained installed for more than one day. It is not clear why the City was so focused on obtaining such details from the area in south London. Detailed documentations of cyclist volumes and characteristics could be obtained by such hardware yet there has been no publicity that the City has conducted any such analysis. This lack of transparency is typical of the City’s actions.

On June 19, 2024 a cyclist was struck and killed in London Ontario on Hamilton Road just west of the intersection of Rectory Street. This is an example of how any meaningful information about the causes of such collisions are not revealed to the cyclists who are its victims. Even motor vehicle drivers could gain some insight and perhaps be more vigilant if they were informed of the scenarios in which these collisions occur.

This photo was taken on June 19, 2024 on Hamilton Road just west of the intersection with Rectory Street. The struck bicycle is positioned at the left of this view and has been positioned upside down likely for the police examination. How and why this collision unfolded has not been revealed much like all previous cyclist collisions in London in recent years.

Some basic information can be obtained from the cyclist observations conducted by Gorski Consulting however it is clearly insufficient. The details of how cyclist collisions occur must be made available to the public if any meaningful solutions can be found. But recent research from Toronto has shown that only about 8% of cyclist collisions are ever documented in police reports. So there must also be a concerted effort to change this lack of transparency by focusing on documentations of a much greater percentage of cyclist collisions. This change cannot occur without the recognition and cooperation of politicians, police, news media and cycling groups.