SUN PRAIRIE, Wis. - Bikers in Sun Prairie rode in silence on Wednesday to raise awareness for biker safety and to remember bikers who died while on the road.
Annie Rubens was one of those bikers. She was riding in Middleton when she hit a pothole and died. She lived in Sun Prairie with her spouse Deb Holland.
“It means a great deal to me as her spouse that everybody is here and we're doing this in honor of her,” Holland said.
Holland also said the ride is to remember Shelton Burrell, who was killed while biking in 2016.
Dane County drew a map of where these bike crashes occurred. The isthmus is particularly crowded, and it looks like the highest concentration - in a singular spot - is just a few blocks west of the square. Please please please be safe out there! #news3now pic.twitter.com/ptCvaZ0gGI— Amy Reid (@amyreidreports) May 16, 2019
Dozens of bikers showed up to bike 7 miles in silence in memory of the two riders and to raise awareness for bikers and biker safety.
“It's unfortunate that we need to have a ride like this,” Holland said. “But it is a fact that sometimes people do get seriously injured or die in bike crashes.”**
Emily Olson helped organize the ride, and she said there is a lot drivers can do to make life easier for bikers, such as giving them extra space and being patient.
“Sometimes we have to take a lane just for our safety,” Olson said. “You might have to wait a minute or two extra to get to where you going, but just be patient about where you're going.”
The Ride of Silence is a national event, and there are rides like this in Madison, but this one was the first of its kind in Sun Prairie. The group behind it - Sun Prairie Moves - said it hopes to do this every year.
**Editor's note: The statistic noted in the video regarding 798 bicycle crashes in Dane County refers to a study by the county that took place over the 2011-2015 period. It does not include crashes in 2018, which means Rubens' death is not part of that statistic. For more information on this study, follow the link corresponding with the editor's note.
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