SA’s Top 10 Risky Rides revealed

20 January, 2023

As part of RAA’s second Risky Rides survey, cyclists have spoken up about the State’s roads that feel most unsafe to our two-wheeled road users – and we list the main offenders.

First held last year, the survey asks participants to identify infrastructure gaps on roads, cycle lanes and paths that pose the biggest risk to cyclists, which then leads to calls for greater investment in cycling and road infrastructure.

Receiving an incredible 761 nominations, the recent survey found Greenhill Road topped the list with the most nominations, followed by Main North Road, Payneham Road, South Road, Fullarton Road, North East Road, Frome Street, Port Road, Sir Donald Bradman Drive and Portrush Road.

In the five years leading up to 2021, 279 cyclists were injured and one was killed on the top ten nominated roads.

RAA Senior Traffic Engineer Matthew Vertudaches said the survey results highlighted more investment was required in cycling infrastructure and road maintenance. 

“The lack of continuous cycling lanes is a real concern for many riders and was the top raised issue in more than half of all nominations, including on Main North Road, Payneham Road and North East Road,” said Mr Vertudaches.

“Cycle lanes that end at intersections, such as at the highly nominated intersection with Greenhill Rd and Fullarton Rd, increase danger to cyclists in locations where there is already heightened risk of a crash.

“RAA would like to see continued investment in road and cycling infrastructure, to improve safety for all road users.”

“Cycle lanes separate cyclists and motorists which helps to reduce the risk of collisions and incidents – making our roads safer and less congested for everyone.

“Ideally, we would like to see more physical separation between cyclists and motor vehicles, which provides far greater benefit than a cycle lane alone. However, this can often be difficult to provide as it requires space which we don’t always have.

“The condition of our roads also affects cyclists much more than motorists and improving these key arterial roads would also help to improve safety.

“We welcome much needed maintenance works that have now occurred on most of the top 10 roads raised in our previous 2020 Risky Rides survey.”

Data from the Department for Infrastructure and Transport shows that right angle crashes were the most commonly occurring crash type on these roads, accounting for 30 per cent of cyclist casualties, followed by side swipe (28 per cent) and right turn (25 per cent).

The data also showed that cyclists were only responsible for 17 per cent of crashes between cyclists and motor vehicles on the top ten nominated roads.

“The vast majority of crashes that involve cyclists on these roads are between them and a motor vehicle,” said Mr Vertudaches.

“That’s why it’s so important we have the cycling infrastructure in place, like dedicated continuous bike lanes, to reduce the interaction between cyclists and motor vehicles and help reduce the risk of an incident.”