Earlier this month, a 23-year old Portland cyclist was injured when he hit a vehicle at the intersection of Cumberland Avenue and State Street.
In Portland, there were 253 bicycle crashes in Portland from 2011-2015, according to the Maine Department of Transportation. By comparing this with annual average daily traffic counts from 2013, we found the intersections where cyclists and cars tend to collide the most. Here’s what that looks like on a map. The red areas indicate the most dangerous intersections over that period.
The intersection of Park and York streets saw the most total crashes — five in that five-year period. But that intersection also sees a relatively high amount of traffic. When you factor in the number of cars that typically pass through it, the intersection of Adelaide and Read streets at Forest Avenue was the most dangerous for cyclists over those five years.
In other words, the ratio of bike crashes to traffic was higher than at other intersections. If you’ve ever biked or driven through there, you might not be surprised. It’s basically a three-way intersection, right off one of the city’s busiest streets, Forest Avenue.
The second most dangerous intersection by our measure was Forest Avenue and Hartley Street.
The intersection of Cumberland Avenue and State Street, where the July 16 accident occurred, only had one bicycle crash from 2011-2015.
Below are the 10 intersections that had the highest ratios of crashes to traffic:
(Note: In some cases, the traffic data and number of bike crashes were not available for the exact same intersections, so we used traffic counts from the nearest ones available.)
Statewide, there were 1,044 roadway bicycle crashes in Maine between 2011 and 2015. Seven were fatal and 978 caused injury to the cyclist, according to state data.
Portland experiences a similar number of bike crashes, per capita, as Boston. Hospitals there, according to the Boston Globe, see an average of 520 crashes a year, based on numbers from 2011-2014. That, as well as the population of Boston, is ten times more than Portland.
(Updated 7/31: We added a note clarifying the traffic data.)