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Published on Aug 02, 2012 by Edgar Snyder

Another Bicycle Accident Death: How Do We Stop These Tragedies?

The city's biggest bicycle event, Bike PGH's BikeFest, will begin on Sunday and run through August 19. Every year, thousands of bikers gather for BikeFest to participate in over 50 rides and activities throughout our beautiful city.

But this year, there are many safety concerns for the bikers who will soon take to the road, and many continue to mourn the deaths of two men who were killed while riding in Point Breeze. These tragedies occurred on the same block of Penn Avenue within less than a week, and one was a hit-and-run accident. The driver who fled the scene is still at large.

When Pennsylvania's new bicycle safety law took effect in April, there was a lot of heated debate between cyclists and drivers, and it's resurfaced in the wake of these two tragedies. I thought the law would help keep bicyclists safer, so it's even more disturbing to me to see that so many drivers and bikers continue to argue over rights of the road.

Regardless of your views on the new law, it's still the law, and drivers and bicyclists must learn to share the road. If not, more people will lose their lives.

Bikers and drivers, please be extra vigilant over the next two weeks during BikeFest. There will be more cyclists on the road than usual, and bicycle safety should be on everyone's mind.

  • Cyclists, please keep to the right side of the road unless you're making a left turn or riding on a one-way street. Watch for people exiting parked cars.
  • Drivers, allow at least four feet between you and a cyclist when passing them. Before you get out of a parked car, look in your rear-view mirror to be sure no cars or cyclists are coming up next to you.

I hope everyone stays safe during BikeFest and that we can learn to respect one another on the road.

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