New York City recorded ten fatal traffic accidents involving cyclists in the first quarter of 2023. This same figure was recorded throughout the entirety of 2018, highlighting an alarming rise in deaths involving cyclists in NYC’s busy streets.
Traffic Incidents with Last-mile Logistics Workers Increasing
Spending hours on the roads each day, the city’s 100,000 delivery workers are among those most at risk, with 62% having already been involved in a motor vehicle collision. Not only does this raise serious safety concerns, but with 30% having missed work due to work-related injuries, accidents can also have severe financial implications for contractors in the sector.
Extensive solutions such as the NYC 25×25 proposal, which would see 25% of the city’s streets make way for additional footpaths and cycle routes, are being discussed. However, immediate action is required.
To curb soaring traffic incidents rates involving last-mile logistics workers, Whizz — an e-bike subscription platform for last-mile delivery drivers — has launched the ‘Ride Safe’ initiative. It will see 100 New York City-based delivery workers each month provided with a free helmet to protect them on the job. Worryingly, this is not the standard, with most retailers failing to provide contractors with vital safety gear.
“Offering instant delivery, keeping small businesses afloat, and serving those with limited mobility — they’re among the unsung heroes of our workforce. Yet, they’re too often underappreciated. So much so that they’re not even provided with important safety equipment, despite the frequent crashes that occur on our city streets. More than half of delivery drivers in New York have been involved in an accident in the past year and collisions continue to rise. We feel a responsibility to make sure our clients are safe.”Ksenia Proka, co-founder and CPO of Whizz.
Live-saving Equipment for All Workers. Join the Cause!
With past data showing that up to 97% of all fatal cycling accidents in New York City involve riders that are not wearing a helmet, this initiative could save countless lives. However, with the market tipped to grow exponentially and the number of delivery workers in the US alone set to reach seven million by 2025, a large-scale initiative is required to stop the rate of accidents involving logistics workers from spinning out of control. To provide every worker with access to life-saving equipment, Whizz has called on the entire industry to join its initiative.
“This is not a marketing campaign, the helmets aren’t branded and you don’t have to be a Whizz client to claim one. This isn’t about profit or recognition. It’s about making sure every delivery driver on the streets of New York is safe. However, we cannot protect them all ourselves and will need the wider industry to join us in providing vital safety equipment to those that keep the sector moving forward. We would love for every company in this space to take part in this initiative. Together, we can ensure delivery drivers everywhere feel safe while doing their job.”Ksenia Proka, co-founder and CPO of Whizz.
Mike Peregudov is the co-founder and CEO of Whizz, an e-bike subscription platform for last-mile delivery drivers. A serial entrepreneur with a decade of experience in last-mile logistics, Peregudov supports the growth of world-changing startups as part of s16vc, an $80m investment fund and community for Europe’s emerging business leaders.