A South Carolina Perspective
The 2010 Benchmarking Report shows that while 5% of
trips in South Carolina are by bicycle or foot, bicyclists and pedestrians
account for 12% of traffic fatalities.
investment in bicycling and walking could be to blame. According to the report, South Carolina spends
just 0.4% of its federal transportation dollars on biking and walking, ranking 47
among states in the nation for investing in biking and walking. This amounts to
just $0.44 per person.
According to Palmetto Cycling Coalition's Director Rachael
Kefalos, "this report highlights not only how poorly South Carolina ranks in
terms of levels of bicycling and walking, funding for these programs, and overall
safety--but it clearly demonstrates that in order to make our streets safe and
inviting for all citizens, and to reverse the obesity epidemic looming over
South Carolina, state and local officials must make investing in bicycling and
walking a long-term priority."
Listed below are four primary take-aways from the Benchmarking Report. Please take a moment to review these.
Current levels of bicycling are low compared to other states
In the analysis of US States in
bicycling to work rates, South Carolina ranked 44th. An estimated 0.5% of all trips made in SC are
by bicycle, and 0.2% of trips to work are by bicycle. From 1990 to 2007, SC saw a 17% drop in
bicycle to work levels. There is a
significant gap between men and women in terms of bicycling rates in the state:
90% of those trips taken on bicycle are by men, while women comprise only 10%
of those trips.
|Second most dangerous state for bicycling
According to the Benchmarking Report
analysis, South Carolina is the second most dangerous state in the nation for
bicycling with 20.2 deaths per 10,000 bicyclists. Bicyclists account for 1.6% of all traffic
fatalities in the in the state-making it one of the most riskiest state for bicycling,
along with Alabama, Louisiana and North Carolina.
|Spending on bike/ped projects remains low
Along with West Virginia and Virginia,
SC spent the smallest percentage of funds on bicycle and pedestrian
projects among states in the US-0.4% of federal transportation dollars, or
$0.44 per capita. Spending of
Transportation Enhancement dollars in SC, the best known funding source for
bike/ped projects, was the lowest rate of any state in the nation.
Impact of bicycling and walking on public health is substantial
Analyzing data from 1960 to 2000
revealed that as bicycling and walking levels have plummeted in the nation,
overweight levels have steadily increased and obesity levels have soared. South Carolina, which has relatively low
levels of bicycling, has an overweight population of 65% and obese population
How can you help?
You may be concerned about the findings of this report. So, how can you help?
- First and foremost: Be a safe
and lawful bicyclist. Remember: you are representing all cyclists in the state
when you are out on the road or trail
- Donate to the Coalition! Your donations ensure our success in our efforts to turn South Carolina around
your public officials: Let them know you want to see more support for
bicycle/walking initiatives and funding. View our fact sheet
or cheat sheet
, educate yourself, and use these documents as talking points with speaking with your municipal, county, state or legislative officials. Attend local council meetings, hearings--make your voice heard!
involved: Join local advocacy groups & clubs that
support bike/ped causes.
Thank you for all you do!
Palmetto Cycling Coalition
We need your support to fuel our efforts!
South Carolina is behind the eight-ball, and now more than ever, the Coalition needs the support of cyclists like yourself to continue our efforts of making SC more bicycle friendly. We are THE voice for cyclists across South Carolina. If your membership has lapsed, please renew today
! If you are not currently a member, please consider becoming one.
Your donations ensure our success. Again, thank you for your support!