New Research – Gender split and safety behavior of cyclists and e-scooter users in Asbury Park, NJ

September 6, 2023

Abstract

Micromobility usage has increased significantly in the last several years as exemplified by shared e-scooters and privately owned bicycles. In this study, we use traffic camera footage to observe the behavior of over 700 shared e-scooters and privately owned bicycles in Asbury Park, New Jersey. We address the following questions: (1) What are the behavioral differences between bicycle and e-scooter usage in terms of helmet use, bike lane / sidewalk use, gender split, group riding, and by time of day? (2) Are more protective conditions associated with helmet use and bike lane / sidewalk use? And (3) what is the gender split between e-scooter users and cyclists? We find notable differences in safety precautions: around one third of cyclists but no shared e-scooter users were observed wearing a helmet. Among cyclists, helmet use was more prominent among men than women. However, men were more likely to ride on the road than women. We also found that the gender split was narrower among e-scooter users, with a nearly even gender split – as opposed to cyclists, where only 21% of cyclists were observed to be women. Our findings suggest that e-scooter users take fewer safety precautions, in that they are less likely to use a bike lane and to wear a helmet. We conclude with policy implications with regards to safety and gender differences between these two modes.

Hannah Younes, Robert B. Noland, Clinton J. Andrews. Gender split and safety behavior of cyclists and e-scooter users in Asbury Park, NJ, Case Studies on Transport Policy, Volume 14,
2023, 101073, ISSN 2213-624X, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cstp.2023.101073.

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