Raising awareness for bike safety in Rochester

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – There have been four deadly bicycle accidents in Monroe County in 2023.

That’s why a local advocacy group Reconnect Rochester is raising awareness for bike safety. Just a few weeks ago, a 57-year-old Webster woman died on her bike, after getting struck on Klem and Five Mile Line Rd.

Jessie Peers with Reconnect Rochester doesn’t know the woman who died a few weeks ago in Webster. But, her son reached out to the group after the accident, to talk about what happened.

Peers said in Monroe County, it’s not uncommon to see two bicycle fatalities a year, but this year it’s been double that.

He said Monroe County has a lot of room to grow, in terms of road safety.

He offered the following tips to bicyclists:

  • Follow the rules of the road, ex. ride on the right side always.
  • Make sure you stand out to drivers. Be conspicuous and easy to spot.
  • Don’t make any surprising moves that would alarm drivers. Be predictable.
  • Stay alert, but don’t be afraid.
  • Bring what you need for a ride, including a helmet at all times.

“There’s roads I would avoid,” said Peers. “There’s roads where the entity that has juristiction over that road has been flat out irresponsible at that point. For example, Lake Avenue, is just too dangerous, until those necessary changes are made.”

But it could take years for Peers to see the changes he wants to see.

“A safe, dedicated space has to be reserved for riders with bikes, scooters. Hopefully in 30 years there won’t be any roads in Monroe County without sidewalks,” he said.

The driver who left the scene at the Aug. 22 Webster hit-and-run, did come forward.

The woman who died was Pamela Rubenstein, who lived in Webster.

So far, no charges have been filed.

Since June, News10NBC reported at least 10 stories about cars hitting bicyclists. The bicyclist died in six of those crashes. Four of those deaths happened in Monroe County, the other two happened in Livingston and Yates counties.

The youngest victim was 19, and the oldest was 81.

The driver left the scene in five of those crashes.