Cycling in Melbourne Australia
An colleague pointed out an article in the HS today about safety of children travelling in Box bikes and trailers. I don't usually read Herald -Sun, I just look at the football pictures in the back half (and often on the front cover as well) The "highlights' of the article were this;
Pretty much this was an circular article expressing one "expert's" opinion, with no supporting evidence. I don't have any problems with people expressing opinions, and don't entirely disagree with this one, but feel like adding my 2 cents worth.
As discussed on here previously, anecdotally drivers give trailers, bike seats and tag-a-long's more room. Many parents, who are confident and prepared to take risks with traffic on a daily basis, add the safety features on with the kids. My big one is flags, this addresses the concerns of the HS article, and I usually attach them whenever we take the trailer or tag-a-long out, even on the path. Flags serve two purposes, the make is possible to see the trailer in traffic (including other bikes) and they usually indicate there's a child attached (apologies to recumbent riders) which often gains a little more tolerance. Subconsciously I think we all ride a bit slower and more cautiously with the kids in tow (at least my wife tells me I have to tow the kids to slow me down).
So while I agree we can be concerned about visibility of trailers etcetera, this does not necessarly translate to risk. I will continue to take the kids out, make them seen, worry about them and have a great time all at once.
This is my opinion based entirely on my experiences, discussions with others and thoughts. I have not done any quantitative research.