This week CBS 2 and the NY Post are busy fanning the flames of the bicycle backlash. CBS 2's sensationalist "Bike Bedlam" series looks at the turf war over street space fought between motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians, focusing on "plenty of New Yorkers [who] have little liking for the biking." CBS 2's Tony Aiello reports that "many New Yorkers have stories to tell about dangerous encounters with bike riders, but when you look for statistics, they are nowhere to be found. New York City doesn’t keep a central database of accidents involving bicycles and pedestrians." But a DOT source tells Streetsblog that Aiello didn't even bother asking the DOT for this info, probably because it goes against his anti-bike narrative. [Update: Turns out the DOT never had the info! See below.]

The DOT's numbers show that accidents between cyclists and pedestrians have gone down almost by half since 2001, from 130 to 49, despite a major increase in the number of cyclists in NYC. Streetsblog's Ben Fried says the stats "pretty much shred the whole 'Bike Bedlam' premise that pro-bike policies are putting pedestrians in danger." And when Fried contacted Aiello to ask him if he had indeed tried to contact the DOT, Aiello snapped, "The city DOT press office has no business talking to you—or to me, or to anyone, about inquiries made by other journalists."

And there's the Post's Andrea Peyser, who just keeps on giving. In her most recent column, she braves the city's streets to reinforce her pre-conceived notion that cyclists are essentially Al Qaeda terrorists on two wheels. "You see them coming from the corner of your eye, if you're lucky," writes Peyser. "Fearless bike riders, whom Mayor Bloomberg and his minions see as the green glory of New York, have morphed into what a police spokesman said was the Upper East Side's No. 1 quality-of-life menace.

"Taking my life into my hands, I stopped deliveryman Ivan Zamora, 25, as he ignored signs and rode in the opposite direction of arrows painted on First Avenue. He removed his noise-blocking headphones. 'I think it's OK' to ride the wrong way, said Zamora. 'The cops no give me a ticket.' " The dangerous, illiterate scofflaw then ran his calloused fingers through Peyser's hair and pulled her in for a long, passionate kiss, which she was powerless to resist, and which instantly transformed Peyser from an odious, elitist hack to a vivacious, fun-loving pixie eager to try new things. And then we woke up.

Update, 8/30: Streetsblog now reports, "We have a confirmation from the NYC DOT press office that the stats on bike-on-ped injuries Streetsblog published last week were based on faulty interpretation of data from the state DOT's traffic injury database." DOT spokesperson Seth Solomonow said, "We did a search last week that was wrong. We did have information that we interpreted as pedestrian crashes involving bikes. We've looked at the underlying crash reports, and it's clear that they all involved motor vehicles." Basically, there's no data on pedestrian vs. bike crashes. CBS 2's Tony Aiello says, "I appreciate [Streetsblog writer] Ben Fried's willingness to fact check his fact check."