Philadelphia held a massive bike ride on Sunday to raise awareness about bike safety, with over 100 cyclists participating in an event that honored those who had lost their lives in car accidents. Among the participants was Sidney Ozer, whose 17-year-old son, Samuel, was killed in a car crash while riding his bike home from work on Father’s Day 2020.
The tragic accident took place on Henry Avenue, one of the city’s high injury streets. According to the city of Philadelphia’s Office of Complete Streets, there have been over 110 traffic fatalities this year alone, including 10 cyclists. This has prompted advocates for safer streets to call for more bike lanes and other safety measures to protect cyclists from harm.
Laura Fredricks, co-founder of Families for Safe Streets of Greater Philadelphia, emphasized that Philadelphia is a Vision Zero city and urged government representatives in Harrisburg to listen to the need for safe street legislation. She also called upon them to extend the Speed Camera Pilot Program and create more bike lanes with a row of parked cars to protect cyclists from traffic.
Ozer believes that if these safety measures had been implemented earlier, his son may still be alive today. He is committed to remembering his son and campaigning for safer streets in his honor as Thanksgiving approaches this year without Samuel for the first time.
Advocates are hoping that this event will bring attention to the dangers faced by cyclists on Philly’s roads and encourage government officials to take action to improve road safety.
With Thanksgiving approaching this year without Samuel Ozer by his side, it is important that we remember him and continue our efforts towards creating safer streets in Philadelphia.