On the Santa Cruz Streets Smarts blog, somebody makes the tired claim that cyclists increase net gas consumption by slowing and stopping the other traffic on the road.
Below is a photo of a typical scene of California Highway 1 in Santa Cruz. Traffic is moving at approximately zero mph, bikes are not permitted on this stretch of Highway 1. Look at this photo and see how many questions you can correctly answer!
1. How many law-breaking arrogant terrorizing critical mass cyclists do you see holding up traffic in this photo?
2. How many cyclists were involved in the four-car fender bender that’s keeping traffic at 0 mph?
3. Of the approximately $10,000 in property damage that was done in that collision, how much was caused by cyclists?
4. One of the car occupants was seen getting strapped into an ambulance gurney with obvious head trauma. What is the cost to the public of head trauma to helmet-less car occupants versus helmet-less bicyclists?
5. If just 100 of these cars were removed from the highway, how much more quickly could the remaining motorists get to their destination? (Hint: You can see about 20 cars back in this photo).