Biking Community Responds To Hit And Run Crash

Posted at 4:19 PM, Jul 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-11 21:39:52-04

Bike advocates said they hope to use the attention garnered by a video of a hit and run bike crash to create awareness and acceptance of bicyclists on Tennessee roads.

The driver of a Volvo hit a biker while trying to cross the center yellow line on Natchez Trace. Thankfully, the bicyclist was not seriously injured, but the video of the crash made a serious impact on the biking community.

Video Shows Vehicle Hitting Cyclist; 1 Arrested
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WARNING: Video contains harsh language.

While the crash had a lot of people talking, it's certainly not the first crash like this that has happened in Tennessee.

"There's a lot of crashes in Nashville with bike riders, walkers, and with people driving, and often it takes a video like this to draw attention to it and make people understand how serious this situation is," said Nora Kern.

Nora Kern is the Executive Director at Walk Bike Nashville, a non profit working to create a more walkable and bikeable city. She was disturbed by the video of the crash on Natchez Trace Parkway but not surprised.

Instead of focusing on the negative, Walk Bike Nashville is hoping to use this as an educational opportunity, encouraging drivers to learn the rules of the road when it comes to bicyclists.

The rules include giving them three feet of room when passing cyclists, as well as an educational opportunity for cyclists, letting them know their rights, and ways to stay protected on the road such as trying to stay on the far right side of the road, and wearing reflective gear.

“You want front and rear tail lights, not only at night, but in the daytime too. You want daytime visibility," Michelle Clonce-Turner, co-owner of Trace Bikes, said.

Trace Bikes sells and rents bikes to locals and visitors alike, and many of those riders head out to Natchez Trace Parkway. 

While there are plenty of cars on the road, Clonce-Turner said it shouldn't be a problem as long as drivers give cyclists the three feet of room they're required to give while passing. 

"Just ease past us, it’s okay, we know you’re back there," Clonce-Turner said.

Most people in the cycling community agree that it will take both sides being aware of each other to make the roads a safer place.