Jun 16, 2016 12:32 PM

Silent ride held by Seacoast bicyclists to honor riders killed and injured

PORTSMOUTH - Seacoast Area Bicycle riders (SABR) wore black armbands as they gathered in Portsmouth’s Market Square Wednesday night and then banded together for a “Silent Ride” around the downtown area.

Outside the North Church, about 100 riders showed up on their bicycles, to honor bicycle riders killed and injured in New Hampshire and Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Last week in Kalamazoo, five bicyclists were killed and four others injured when a truck ran into their ride group. Their names were read off during the vigil, along with the names of Seacoast riders killed while riding their bicycles.

In the past three years, John Kavanaugh was killed in Durham, Pamela Wells and Elise Bouchard were killed in Hampton, and Margaret Rugg was killed in Exeter.

“Unlike a motor vehicle, a crash involving a bicycle means an injury or a death,” said Tim Blagden, executive director of the Bike-Walk Alliance of NH.

SABR member Jeff Latimer, says there have been three serious bicycle accidents in New Hampshire in the past week. Two bicyclists were injured in a Madbury accident, one bicyclist was hurt in Rye and one in Nashua.

Latimer is working with Blagden and members of SABR to educate bicyclists and drivers about shared safety responsibilities. They say drivers distracted by cell phones are one of bicyclists biggest hazards.

“Our roads are shared public space. Using the road properly requires cooperation,” Blagden told the crowd.

The bicyclists also took time during Wednesday night’s vigil to share a moment of silence for the victims in the Orlando night club shooting.

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