Monday, May 23, 2011

Ride of Silence

The Ride of Silence is observed the third Wednesday in May every year starting in 2003, when Larry Schwartz was killed by a school bus mirror in Dallas. The Ride of Silence is a worldwide event. It is a slow paced, silent bicycle ride in memory of cyclists killed in accidents with motor vehicles. The Fort Worth ride started and ended in Trinity Park, riding through Downtown and the Near Southside. Armbands were displayed: red for riders who have been injured or harassed by motorists, black for everyone else, to honor those who could not be there.

Members of bike clubs were encouraged to wear club jerseys to let the public know that we have a very active cycling community in and around Fort Worth.

We took the ride slowly enough that any cyclist who could ride for an hour would be able to keep up.

Special thanks to Scott Strom for organizing this event. Also, thanks to the Fort Worth Police bicycle-mounted officers for providing escort, Bicycles Inc. for providing mechanical support, and several EMTs who rode with us just in case there were any medical problems. 182 riders participated in Fort Worth.


Steve A said...

I have heard that the ROS "shrieks about how dangerous cycling is,"

Did you find that to be the case?

Doohickie said...

As with most forms of cycling advocacy, people see in it what they will I suppose.

I was a little ambivalent about going on the ride, but it was well run and without exception the riders were silent and solemn. I think it was exactly in keeping with the desired nature of the ride. What message did it send to others? Hard to say, but I think most of those who participated took it to be the memorial for fallen riders it was intended to be.

Cars driving by probably didn't know what it was all about, but if nothing else it was another example of cyclists and motorists sharing the road, peacefully coexisting. If the fact that bikes and cars can use the same infrastructure was the only message it sent to outsiders, I'm okay with that.

It was the biggest ride through Downtown I've ever participated in.