Em Baker and her friends Nick Navarro and Lauren Gardner are uncommonly motivated bicyclists. They recently began a 3,000-mile bike journey across the country to raise awareness about bicycle accidents and how riders and vehicles can share the road safely and responsibly. They are riding from San Francisco, Ca., to Orlando and have charted a very ambitious course, literally and figuratively. Beginning in San Francisco, the trio will ride south to San Diego. They will then follow the Southern Tier suggested by the Adventure Cycling Association through Phoenix, Austin, Baton Rouge and other coastal cities before arriving in the decidedly bicycle-unfriendly city of Orlando.
"There’s no reason that the U.S. can’t have the kind of systems in place in the Netherlands or Denmark, where you’re 30 times less likely to be hit by a car," says Baker. "What we’re hoping to do is basically change the way that we look at using the road, and hopefully the way we think about building cities in the future, and the way we think about getting ourselves around."
The trio plans to speak with experts at stops along the journey to discuss infrastructure models and other ways for American cities to become more bike-friendly. They also plan to interview bicycle accident victims along the way and learn how these accidents changed the course of their lives, as well as pay their respects to those who have been killed in bicycle accidents.
"We want to highlight that this is 700 people a year," said Baker, speaking about bike accident fatalities. "It makes no sense that we accept this as a fact and don’t try to alter the statistic at all."
Baker reports that the trip will take around three months to complete, and filmmakers will follow her and her two friends along the way to make a documentary about their journey. She says that animosity between riders and drivers in most urban areas is part of the problem.
"One thing I noticed was this weird combination of acceptance and animosity from the cycling community, where it was this attitude of: well they’re going to hit us with their cars anyway, and we’re going to hate them," she says. "It didn’t make any sense to me. No cyclist wants to be hit by a car. No motorist wants to hit a cyclist. It’s a nightmare for both parties and nobody wins. So why does it happen?"
In the vast majority of cases, negligence on the part of the driver or rider is the main cause of bicycle accidents. If you’re a bicyclist who has been struck and injured by a negligent driver, you have a right seek damages to help pay medical bills, repair or replace your bike and compensate you for lost wages, pain and suffering and other damages. If you or a member of your immediate family has been injured in a bike accident and you would like to speak with an Orlando personal injury attorney, call James O. Cunningham today at 800-425-2004. Mr. Cunningham has helped injured people since 1977 and has a proven record of success helping them receive the fair and just compensation they deserve. Call today to schedule your free consultation with an experienced Orlando bicycle accident lawyer.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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If you or someone you love has been injured in a vehicle accident, call toll-free at 1-888-FLA-Auto (1-888-352-2886).
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