A Citi Bike bicycle is seen at a rental location in New York. Shannon Stapleton/Reuters

A man was killed Monday morning riding on a Citi Bike in Chelsea.

A long safe-riding streak has come to an end. After more than four years and 43 million trips since New York’s Citi Bike system debuted, the system saw its first fatality Monday morning.

The New York Post identified the victim as a 36-year-old investment banker. Police sources said the man was struck by a bus on 26th Street near 8th Avenue as he was riding between a moving coach bus and a parked car around 8:20 a.m. He reportedly lost control of the bike, fell to the ground, and was run over by the bus. He was pronounced dead two hours later.

“Together with the City of New York, we wish to express our heartfelt condolences to the rider's family and loved ones on this terrible tragedy,” writes Motivate spokeswoman Dani Simons. Motivate operates the Citi Bike system, with 10,000 bikes and 603 stations. The system makes up roughly 40 percent of the total bike-share trips in the country.

A Google Street View of where a man was struck by a bus on 26th Street near 8th Avenue in Chelsea, New York. (Google Street View)

Bike share, in general, has had an impressive safety record. This is only the second fatality since since modern systems launched in the U.S. in 2010. (The first occurred last July in Chicago when a cyclist collided with a flatbed truck.) In that time, there have been more than 102 million bike-share trips. Compare that to the 17 cyclists killed by motorists last year in New York City alone. But Kate Fillin-Yeh, the director of strategy at the National Association of City Transportation Officials, says to consider those numbers in the context of how many more cyclists there are on the road today.

“When you consider [the number of cyclists] has increased four-fold over [the last two decades], it is a 72 percent reduction in risk,” she says. “The number of cyclists killed each year stays within those low numbers and it is so much safer than it used to be, a testament to the infrastructure that has been built to create bike networks.”

Fillin-Yeh previously worked at New York City’s Department of Transportation. She also designed and implemented Citi Bike as its director and was the lead author of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Vision Zero Action Plan.

“Fundamentally, bike share brings an overwhelming amount of good to cities,” she says. “This is a tragedy and it points to the fact that we have to keep doing our best to make sure cities are safe places for people.”

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Life

    The (Legal) Case Against Bidding Wars Like Amazon's

    The race to win Amazon’s second headquarters has reignited a conversation dating back to the late ‘90s: Should economic incentives be curbed by the federal government? Can they be?

  2. A small accessory dwelling unit—known as an ADU—is attached to an older single-family home in a Portland, Oregon, neighborhood.
    Design

    The Granny Flats Are Coming

    A new book argues that the U.S. is about to see more accessory dwelling units and guides homeowners on how to design and build them.

  3. Transportation

    On Paris Metro, Drug Abuse Reaches a Boiling Point

    The transit workers’ union says some stations on Line 12 are too dangerous to stop at. What will the city do?

  4. Police cars outside the New York Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York City
    Life

    The Great Crime Decline and the Comeback of Cities

    Patrick Sharkey, author of Uneasy Peace, talks to CityLab about how the drop in crime has transformed American cities.

  5. Harlequin books are pictured at a store in Ottawa.
    Life

    Want to Make It in the Gig Economy? Emulate Romance Novelists

    Their three keys to success: They welcome newcomers, they share competitive information, and they ask advice from newbies.