Stats on Cycling Through Red Lights

An interesting report from Transport for London about the % of cyclists who actually cycle through red lights in London. Report on Cycling stats TFL pdf

Transport for London Conducted a survey at 5 different locations around London and marked the number of cyclists who went through red lights.

  • Total Cyclists who ran a red light – 1180 / 6322
  • % Cyclists of went through a red light – 16%.
  • % of cyclists who didn’t go through a red light – 84%
  • The number of male cyclists observed at these junctions was 78% of the total number of cyclists. Women account for 22% of observed cyclists.
  • The figure for men running red lights (17%) was slightly higher than women (13%), though there doesn’t seem to be a significant gender gap.
  • In general, cyclists who ride through red lights are more likely to do so whilst travelling straight ahead at a junction. They are least likely to do so when turning right.
  • 54% of red light violations were for cycling straight ahead. 24% for turning left. 18% for turning right.


Since 2000, there has been an 83% increase in cycle use in London. The increased number of cyclists on the streets will have increased the actual number of cyclists running the red-light. This might explain why many feel the problem is getting worse – there are simply more cyclists. However, the % of red light running has not been measured in years when cycle use was much lower.

The report concludes

A total of 7502 cyclists were surveyed across all of the sites. Of these, an average of 16% violated red lights, while the remaining 84% obeyed the traffic signals. Therefore it can be concluded that the majority of cyclists do not ride through red lights. However, the 16% that do must be discouraged from ignoring traffic signals.

Accidents at Red Lights.

Quite revealing is the statistic

“Of pedestrians injured in London in a collision caused by red light jumping only 4% involve cyclists, whereas 71% occur when a car driver jumps a red light and 13% when a motorcyclist does. As an organisation representing those two road user groups, CTC suggests IAM ought to call for more road traffic policing to enforce traffic laws, rather than highlighting red light jumping by cyclists.” CTC

From the media coverage, it often feels running red lights is primarily a violation by cyclists. But, just 4% of accidents suggests that the danger posed by motor cars is much greater.