Parking, traffic congestion, and gas prices are just some of the factors that are leading to an increase in the number of cyclists on the roadways of large cities and suburbs alike.
Major cities such as Austin, Dallas, Houston, and Forth Worth are taking an active role in making their cities bicycle and pedestrian friendly to encourage additional bicycle use, both for recreation and commuting.
These programs are a positive for the communities: however, as the number of cyclists rises, so has the number of bicycle accidents and fatalities.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 726 cyclists were killed and an additional 49,000 were injured in motor vehicle traffic accidents in 2012.
These numbers can be expected to rise as state and local governments attempt to increase cycling by expanding their bicycle friendly programs.
With the increase in bicycles on the road, safety will become a much larger issue, and the number of accidents should be expected to rise proportionally unless a viable and visible bicycle safety program is established in the major cities.
Our mission is to promote bicycle safety to cyclists and motorists through education and community involvement.
Our goal is to reduce the number of motor‐vehicle related pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities.
We plan to do this by increasing public information and education on motorists’ responsibilities pertaining to pedestrian and bicyclist safety.
To help achieve our goal, we have been awarded a statewide grant from the Texas Department of Transportation. With this grant, we are able to travel to the major cities in Texas to promote bicycle safety in schools, at bicycle events, and various community outreach programs.
Through various bicycle events, community events, and elementary school presentations across the state of Texas, Elbowz Racing will teach young cyclists about the rules of the road, the importance of proper protective gear, and safe riding.
Team members will also engage adult cyclists to reinforce safe riding principals and safety habits, as well as being role models of safety for young riders. With these actions, we hope to decrease the number of bicycle related injuries and fatalities.
During 2015, we conducted more than 15 events where we focused on educating kids about bicycle safety.
As part of our contribution to the program, we gave 1,000 helmets to kids in need and we have pledged to give another 1,000 helmets in 2016.
We also developed numerous PI&E material to give away at our events.
In 2016, we hope to double the number of events we attend and are planning to create a number of bicycle safety videos to help educate and increase the public information available on bicycle safety.