I reached today 70 bike days going to work. Living in Munich you bike – period. Good bike lanes, most car drivers reasonable, lots of parks, little hills and distances are comparatively small. During rush hours, however, even Munich’s streets can be scary places, when you’re on a bike and trucks and cars are rushing by. Our streets can also be deadly places. Fully one-third of bike fatalities happen within intersections mostly related to right turns. The prospect of getting smashed keeps all but the most fearless cyclists off of city streets for going to work – including me. I did a lot of city rollerblading but hesitated to bike to the office.
After I was transferred back to an office not far away where I live, I mapped out the different levels of traffic on the streets to work.While 50% leads through two large and two small parks and streets are calm enough or have good bike lanes, the route is still sliced up by one busy expressway and two highways. With google map I found two underpasses and a good overpass. I avoided high-stress streets with high-speed limits, limited or non-existent bike lanes and signage, and large distances to cross at intersections. I chose two different routes for the morning and the evening to avoid crossing an unpleasant right turn. Since I did more than 3000 km per year biking a year (14 km one way to work) including leisure biking accumulated risk equals probability multiplied with exposure. Now its fun.