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Updated May 2, 2013 - 2:32 pm

Survey: Arizona ranks in top 10 for bicycle friendliness

It's all about the pedal power: Arizona moved up four spots to No. 10 in the League of American Bicyclists' annual survey of the country's most bicycle friendly states.

The survey focused primarily on states' ability to carry out plans and programs that promote bike riding and bike safety.

"One of our most notable accomplishments this past year was the completion of a Bicycle Safety Action Plan to improve bicyclist safety on Arizona's highways," said Michael Sanders, ADOT's bicycle and pedestrian program coordinator. "The goal is to reduce the number of bicyclist fatalities and injury crashes with motor vehicles. We ‘crash-typed' nearly 750 reported crashes that occurred over a five-year period to better define the sequence of events leading to the collisions. For example, we found that more than half of all crashes occurred while a motorist was making a right turn. ADOT's new plan consists of action items addressing potential changes to policies and education programs, along with new tools to improve bicyclist safety."

Arizona's jump into the top 10 is in large part because of its reputation as a bike tour destination state and the increasing number of residents who have chosen to commute by bike.

Arizona has nine bicycle friendly communities: Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert, Tucson/ eastern Pima County region, Sedona, Cottonwood and Flagstaff.

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