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Cyclists and motorcyclists make our roads more dangerous, survey says

Car driving motorists believe roads are made more dangerous by the presence of cyclists and motorcyclists, a survey by insurance broker Zurich has revealed. 

The survey asked 2,000 drivers about how the road dangers of today compare with those back in 2003. 16 per cent said they thought 'more motorcyclists on the road' makes our streets more dangerous, while 29 per cent said there being 'more cyclists' is a problem.

Push bikes and motorbikes were, in fact, relatively low down in the table of perceived risks, sitting at number 8 and number 10, respectively. 

Sitting atop the risk table is 'more people using mobile phones', with a total of 68 per cent of votes, closely followed by 'more cars on the road' (67 per cent), 'more reckless drivers (61 per cent) and 'more urgency to get to destination' (44 per cent).

Sat-navs and the increase of vans and lorries were not spared the wrath of the motorists surveyed, racking up 6th and 7th place with 30 and 29 per cent, respectively.

It may seem like a pot-shot at our two-wheeled brethren, but remember 'more cars' raked in more than four times the number of votes as motorcyclists. This echoes statistics, which saw the number of bikes in the UK rise from 1,188,600 in 2003 to 1,302,300. Car numbers were at 21.2 million in 1994 and had reached 34.5 million at the end of 2012, according to the DVLA.

With that said, a number of surveys have expressed anger at some cyclists who, seemingly, disregard the rules of the road.

Cyclists safety concerns reached fever pitch recently when the sixth cyclist was pronounced dead over a period of 14 days in London. This has lead to a call for London Mayor Boris Johnson to review cycling safety and other measures such as onboard cameras for trucks.

The survey also asked motorists about the situations they feel most 'at risk' during. 76 per cent said they felt most at risk while navigating unknown roads, while 61 per cent said complicated signs were distracting. Interestingly, 55 per cent said safety cameras were distracting.

Another part of the survey on the subject of dangers out of the driver's control revealed that 34 per cent of the vote said cyclists were a distraction.

Are bikes and motorbikes making life more dangerous for all motorists, or is it merely a by-product of overly crowded roads and poor driving skills? We'd love to know what you think.

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