Is It Safe to Ride My Bike in Downtown Raleigh?

Bike Accident AdviceAccording to The News & Observer, over 200 bicyclists participated in the Capital Area Ride for Safety (CARS) in late September. The event’s name is abbreviated as CARS to point out what the cyclists believe to be the greatest threat to their safety. The purpose of the ride was to raise bike safety awareness. Specifically, CARS participants hoped to promote improved interactions between drivers and bicyclists in downtown Raleigh.

During CARS, the cyclists rode a 28-mile loop around Raleigh. They started at Wakefield High School and stopped halfway through their ride at Halifax Mall in downtown Raleigh. The riders spent almost an hour at Halifax Mall eating fruit and bagels to refuel while listening to speeches from local bike advocates. Afterwards, they completed their ride, returning to Wakefield High School.

One of the riders participating in CARS was a survivor of a bike accident, in which a pickup truck collided with him while he was cycling. The cyclist, who wore a yellow shirt with the phrase “Do you see me now?” printed on it during CARS, had to spend eight days in intensive care following the wreck. After that, he spent another three months stuck in bed and then spent the next five years recovering from his injuries.

Sig Hutchinson, Wake County Commissioner, also participated in CARS. He noted bike friendly improvements to the area in recent years, including a 250-mile greenway system, 70 miles of bike lanes and an impending bike share program.

Do you feel that Raleigh is doing enough to encourage bike safety? If not, what more do you think the city could do? Tell us your thoughts on this issue on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or in this blog’s comments section.

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