(Note: This post podcast will appear Monday on Streetsblog California as part of our weekly podcast #DamienTalks)

Good Data, it’s the Holy Grail of transportation reform advocates.

Today, #DamienTalks with Richard McKinnon, the head of Safe Streets Santa Monica and a member of the local planning commission, about his organization’s efforts to bring data to an often emotional debate over street safety. Santa Monica is one of the more progressive cities when it comes to transportation planning, yet there is a common belief among many residents that bicyclists are somehow a menace on the streets.

Using TIMS data, collected by the local police and compiled by statisticians at University of California at Berkeley, Safe Streets Santa Monica mapped 9,600 crashes that occurred over the last ten years.

Less than fifty of these crashes were caused by cyclists. McKinnon is sharing this data with his fellow planning commissioners, city staff and the City Council to inform the discussion when issues of traffic safety are brought up.

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Want to repeat Safe Streets’s success? Head over to the TIMS website and get cracking.

We’re always looking for sponsors, show ideas, and feedback. You can contact me at [email protected], at twitter @damientypes, online at Streetsblog California or onFacebook at StreetsblogCA.

Thanks for listening. You can download the episode at the Damien Talks homepage on Libsyn.