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ROAD SAFETY

Spanish cycling deaths rank highest in Europe, study shows

In 2010, 67 bike deaths were reported across the country

"Politicians still don't understand the need for bike lanes"

Spain ranks the highest among European countries in terms of cyclist deaths on the road, according to a study released Tuesday.

In 2010, 67 bike deaths were reported across the country — 20 percent more than the previous year, said Julio Laria of the Mapfre Foundation’s Institute for Road Security, which conducted the survey. There were 564 serious injuries in 2010 resulting from traffic accidents involving cyclists.

“The crisis has forced people to ride to work on bicycles and the politicians still don’t understand [the need to build bike lanes],” said Alfonso Triviño, head of the Professional Cyclists Association.

The majority of the deaths occurred on highways, Laria explained. Ireland, Latvia and Belgium ranked in that order behind Spain, but cyclist deaths in those countries were attributed mostly to bad weather.

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