By Charles Pekow — One factor that keeps women from cycling is they fear how they'll be treated should something go wrong. Researchers conducted surveys in 10 communities in the Toronto area about safety perceptions. Investigators from the University of Toronto and Ryerson University chose five locales with bike lanes and five without.
The study reported that “cyclists who identify as women are more concerned about safety overall compared to those who identify as men.” But it wasn't because females were more afraid of colliding with a vehicle or getting hurt. Women were more scared of getting bullied, verbally abused, or otherwise unpleasantly treated by a motorist. Surprisingly, the presence or absence of bike lanes didn't affect the survey results.
The study concludes that more research is needed into gender differences in transportation behavior.
Find Gendered Perceptions of Cycling Safety and On-Street Bicycle Infrastructure: Bridging the Gap at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1361920922000670