Is biking more dangerous than driving? How many cyclists die on Washington State roads each year? Is it more dangerous to bike at night? Find out with these local and national biking statistics.

Washington State Bicycle Crash Statistics, National Cyclist Accident Numbers

Biking can be a wonderful alternative for driving - it costs less, saves gas, and is great exercise. Especially in the Northwest and Washington State, biking as a form of transportation and commuting is becoming increasingly popular, especially in the face of environmental and health concerns.

However, biking can still be a dangerous undertaking, especially when the drivers of cars, trucks, and motorcycles don't understand how to share the road. Below are some revealing statistics about the state of biking accidents and cyclist fatalities around the country and specifically in Washington State.

· Washington ranked as the eleventh best state for bicycle fatalities in 2007 among the 50 states, reporting only 7 fatalities and 1.09 cyclist deaths per million people.

· Sixty percent of bike fatalities in Washington State were in urban areas in 2007.

· Most fatal bike accidents in Washington State were associated with crossing roadways (35%), riding against traffic (27%) and turning into the path of a vehicle (10%).

· Washington has allotted $18 million for bicycle safety programs and safe school route programs from 2007-2009.

· There are about 700 cyclist deaths per year, while 90 percent of those losing their lives are male. They consist of 2 percent of total traffic deaths each year (which includes pedestrians, cars, trucks, and motorcycles.

· About 45,000 cyclists are injured each year, although many believe this number is significantly under reported. Cyclists are 4.5 times more likely to be injured than motor vehicle drivers, per mile of travel.

· Three out of five at fault drivers involved in cyclist accidents are never cited, even in the event of fatal crashes and hit-and-runs.

· It is more dangerous to bike on major roads as opposed to local ones, with 57% of crashes taking place on main thruways.

· Forty percent of cyclists die at night, along most bike riding takes place during daylight hours.

· One in 20 cyclists are injured while riding each year.