Articles Tagged with “Boston bicycle accident lawyers”

Attorney Marc L. Breakstone’s message to fifth graders in Arlington yesterday? Ride safe.

Breakstone, White & Gluck kicked off our 2017 Project KidSafe campaign yesterday, donating 50 helmets to Peirce Elementary School in Arlington.  Attorney Breakstone participated in a bike safety training led by Richard Fries, executive director of MassBike. Helmets were distributed to children who needed one after the training.

Breakstone, White & Gluck has completed its 2016 Project KidSafe campaign, donating nearly 5,000 helmets to children in Massachusetts this year. With help from local bicycle committees, police departments, schools and community groups, we have now donated more than 10,000 bicycle helmets over four years to help children ride safely.

Our partners, Marc L. Breakstone, David W. White and Ronald E. Gluck, thank everyone who has helped us and embraced our goal: to keep children and families safe and encourage them to wear a helmet every time they ride to prevent serious head injuries.

Read More About Our 2016 Donations:
2016 Project KidSafe Campaign Wrap-Up
2016 Local Bicycle Committee Donations
2016 Police Department Donations
2016 School Donations

Our Partners:
Boston Bikes, Roll It Forward
CYCLE Kids
Bikes Not Bombs
Arlington iCan Shine Camp
Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee
Ashland Farmers Market
Bicyclecentro of East Boston
Bike Milton
Commonwheels Bicycle Collective
Dedham Bike Rodeo
East Arlington Livable Streets Coalition
Easthampton Healthy Youth Coalition
Framingham Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee
Friends of Lexington Bikeways
Groundwork Somerville
Haynes Early Education Center in Roxbury
Massachusetts Safe Routes to School
Northbridge Public Schools
Somerville Kiwanis Club
Somerville Public Schools
The Home for Little Wanderers
Tierney Learning Center of South Boston
Up Academy Dorchester
Watertown Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee
Westborough Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee
Westwood Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Committee
Windsor Street Care Center of Cambridge
Worcester Earn-a-Bike

Our Police Department Partners:
Cambridge Police
Dedham Police
Everett Police
Randolph Police
Norwood Police
Waltham Police
Marlborough Police
Malden Police
Tewksbury Police
Somerville Police
Framingham Police
Lexington Police

Cycling Clubs and Bicycle Organizations:
We were also pleased to support safe riding in other ways, by sponsoring the Boston Cyclists Union, MassBike, Northeast Bicycle Club, Charles River Wheelmen, New England Mountain Bike Association (NEMBA), CYCLE Kids and Bikes Not Bombs. We are also sponsoring the Boston Bikes #BeBrilliant campaign again in 2016.

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As part of our commitment to keep children safe, Breakstone, White & Gluck donated bicycle helmets to several schools and safety programs during our 2016 Project KidSafe campaign. We made donations to schools in the Boston area and across the state.

We made our largest donation of 400 helmets to Massachusetts Safe Routes to School, which works with schools, communities, students and families to increase biking and walking among elementary and middle school students. Safe Routes to School offers safety education and organizes bicycle rodeos in more than 50 percent of communities in Massachusetts.

This is the second year our law firm has partnered with Safe Routes to School. In 2016, Breakstone, White & Gluck donated helmets to support Safe Routes to School’s work at schools, including:

  • Brayton Elementary School in North Adams
  • Arlington Elementary School in Lawrence
  • Gibbons Elementary in Stoughton

Last Spring, Massachusetts Safe Routes to School also gave out helmets from our Project KidSafe campaign at a bike rodeo at the South Boston Neighborhood House. Attorney David W. White fit helmets for the kids and participated:

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Left: Attorney White with Moss Lynch and Jana Linhart of Massachusetts Safe Routes to School, Maren Tober of South Boston Healthy Community Champions and Mary Picard Walsh from the South Boston Neighborhood House. Next: Attorney White helping a young cyclist. Next: Group shot of kids with Jana Linhart, Safe Routes to School outreach coordinator and Attorney White. Last: Young cyclist takes to the obstacle course.

In 2015, Breakstone, White & Gluck donated helmets to support Safe Routes to School’s work at:

  • Lawrence Bike Program, Lawrence
  • Avon Bike Rodeo, Avon
  • Reingold School Bike Rodeo, Fitchburg
  • Bike & Trike Parade, Salem
  • Newman School Festival, Needham
  • Greenfield Bike Rodeo at Greenfield Middle School, Greenfield
  • Salem Farmers’ Market, Salem
  • Milton Rodeo at Pierce Middle School, Milton
  • Williams Elementary Bike Rodeo, Pittsfield
  • Ciclovia, Lawrence
  • Springfield Library Bike Rodeo, Springfield
  • Foncesca Bike Summer Session, Fall River

Other Donations to Schools
Through our Project KidSafe campaign, Breakstone, White & Gluck has donated over 10,000 helmets to children in Boston and across Massachusetts since 2013. Our other donations to schools and education centers during our 2016 campaign include:

Somerville Public Schools and CYCLE Kids
In Somerville, we donated 300 helmets to Somerville Public Schools and CYCLE Kids. The helmets were given to fifth graders who completed the CYCLE Kids curriculum as part of their physical education classes. The curriculum teaches students how to ride a bicycle, bicycle safety and nutrition basics. This is the third year we have made this donation. Attorney Marc L. Breakstone joined Somerville Police Officer Marianne Manfra, Physical Education Teacher Kris Savage in handing out the helmets to students at the Dr. Albert F. Argenziano School last June. Read our blog.

Arlington Public Schools

In Arlington, we made a donation to the Arlington Public Schools for the third year. We donated 170 helmets to support the Walk to School Day events for elementary school students. These events focus on encouraging children to safely walk and ride bicycles to school. Our Project KidSafe bicycle helmets were donated to children who needed one during these events. The donation was coordinated through the Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee. Read our blog.

Joseph M. Tierney Learning Center
For the second year, Breakstone White & Gluck donated bicycle helmets to the Joseph M. Tierney Learning Center in South Boston. Attorney David W. White fit helmets for the children at the center’s summer party in July.

A boy receiving a new bicycle helmet. 20160707-IMG_1261 20160707-IMG_1351 20160707-IMG_1242  Attorney David White with a young cyclist in South Boston. 20160707-IMG_1293

Haynes Early Education Center
In Roxbury, we donated 75 helmets to the Haynes Early Education Center, which is part of the Boston public school system. The school gave the helmets to children who needed one at its Healthy Families Event. Read our blog.

Photos: Arlington Public Schools left, then the Haynes Early Education Center.

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Easthampton Healthy Youth Coalition and Easthampton Public Schools
In Easthampton, we donated 140 bicycle helmets to children at the Event to Celebrate Bike Safety in May. The event was sponsored by the Easthampton Healthy Youth Coalition, Easthampton Police, Easthampton Public Schools and the Northwestern District Attorney’s Office. Attorney David W. White attended to help fit helmets for the children. Read our blog.

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milton-2016-2Breakstone, White & Gluck cares about bicycle safety in Boston and across Massachusetts. Over the past four years, our attorneys have donated brand-new bicycle helmets to children who need one through our Project KidSafe campaign.

Wearing a helmet is the most effective step a cyclist can take to prevent a brain injury in a car accident or fall on a bicycle. While important for all cyclists, wearing a helmet is especially important for children, who are still growing and in development.

Breakstone, White & Gluck is nearing the end of the fourth year of our Project KidSafe campaign. Since 2013, our campaign has donated over 10,000 new bicycle helmets to children who needed one. Along the way, over 40 community groups, bicycles safety organizations, police departments and schools have pitched in to help us protect children. Many of these groups help us year in and year out.

Breakstone, White & Gluck kicked off our 2016 Project KidSafe campaign yesterday, continuing our commitment to children’s bicycle safety. Attorney Marc Breakstone visited the iCan Shine Bike Camp in Arlington, where we donated bicycle helmets to the 25 riders.

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Attorney Marc L. Breakstone of Breakstone, White & Gluck with a cyclist and volunteer at the iCan Shine Bike Camp at the Ottoson Middle School in Arlington, Mass.

This is the third year Breakstone, White & Gluck has supported the iCan Shine Bike Camp in Arlington. iCan Shine is an international non-profit organization, with local organizers who host five-day camps which teach children and young adults with autism and other disabilities how to ride a bicycle.

Today was Bike Friday, sponsored by Boston Bikes, the city office which promotes safe cycling. Bike Friday is one of the last events of Bay State Bike Week. It included a number of organized rides and a gathering at Boston City Hall. Breakstone, White & Gluck was there to share information about our Project KidSafe campaign.

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Attorney David W. White and Attorney Marc L. Breakstone of Breakstone, White & Gluck participated in Bike Friday at Boston City Hall Plaza. The two attorneys were there to support the cyclists as they rode in and to share information about the firm’s Project KidSafe campaign.


Boston Bikes organizes Bike Fridays to celebrate those who ride their bikes to work and to encourage others. More than two dozen organizations and vendors signed up for today’s event. While 200 cyclists registered for the event, organizers estimated up to 350 cyclists actually pedaled in and enjoyed a free breakfast, courtesy of Boloco.

Breakstone, White & Gluck participated for the first time and set up our Project KidSafe tent to show support for the cyclists. Attorneys David W. White and Marc L. Breakstone were among the crowd waiting for the cyclist convoys, which came in from Lexington, Newton, Somerville and many other communities.

Other organizations which participated included MassBike, Boston Cyclists Union, Livable Streets Alliance, Hubway and Landry’s Bicycles.

Marc and David spoke to a number of cyclists about our Project KidSafe initiative, through which we donate bicycle helmets to children who need one in the Boston and Worcester areas. We have donated more than 4,000 bicycle helmets since 2013, through partner organizations such as CYCLE Kids of Cambridge, Somerville and Cambridge public schools, Bikes Not Bombs, Massachusetts Safe Routes to Schools, the Westborough Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee. We have also worked with Boston Bikes’ Roll It Forward program, which refurbishes used bicycles and donates them to city residents who may not otherwise have access to a bicycle.

After the event, Marc said, “It is rewarding for us to be able to give back to the community in a way that promotes safety for children. We look forward to continuing our Project KidSafe program, and to expanding it in the years to come.”

The next Bike Friday events are scheduled for June 26th, July 24th and August 28th. Read more about the event.

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The cyclists came in in convoys this morning, traveling in from Lexington, Arlington and other communities. While 200 cyclists registered in advance, organizers estimate 350 actually rolled in.

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Nearly one million Trek bikes have been recalled after a cyclist was left paralyzed by an accident caused by a defective front disc brake.

About 900,000 bicycles in the U.S. and 98,000 bicycles in Canada were recalled recently by Trek Bicycle Corporation of Waterloo, Wisconsin. The recall involves bicycles sold nationwide from September 1999 through April 2015 for between $480 and $1,650.

Bicycles involved in the recall have a quick release lever on the bicycle’s front wheel hub that can come into contact with the front disc brake assembly, causing the front wheel to come to a sudden stop or separate from the bicycle, posing a risk of serious injury to the rider. Defective bicycles have a front quick release lever that expands beyond 180 degrees.

Trek issued the recall after reports of three injuries, including one person who suffered quadriplegia. A second person suffered facial injuries and another suffered a fractured wrist.

Consumers should stop using these Trek bicycles immediately. Call an authorized Trek retailer for a free inspection and installation of a new quick release on the front wheel of your bike. Trek is trying to encourage cyclists to seek the repair by offering a $20 coupon toward Bontrager merchandise.

Trek has not released a list of specific bicycle model numbers. Cyclists need to check their own bicycles and see if they are impacted by this recall. Some bicycles involved in this recall were purchased many years ago and owners may not have the original paperwork. Or you may have purchased one of these bicycles secondhand.

Do your due diligence and seek out a Massachusetts bicycle shop which sells Trek bicycles. Ask for a free inspection and have them make the free repair if needed.

Find a Trek bike dealer.
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cyclist-pedestrians.jpgSafety for pedestrians and drivers was in the spotlight this winter, as Boston endured a record snow fall and everyone stood divided by the tallest of snowbanks. Now, as the snow starts to melt, cyclists are back out too and we want to take a moment to share a few safety reminders.

Safety was a priority this winter because Massachusetts saw many car accidents, even though state officials called multiple snow emergencies, and many schools closed, to keep the roads clear. We also saw at least two fatal pedestrian accidents. In Weymouth, a woman was hit and killed by a snow plow as she walked in the parking lot of her condominium complex. A 60-year-old employee at a Medford Whole Foods store also was killed, hit by a snow plow in the parking lot, leaving after his work shift.

Safety advocates made progress on protecting cyclists and pedestrians in 2014. This will serve as a strong foundation as we dig out from this harsh winter. In Boston, the city has implemented a truck safety ordinance, requiring that city-contracted trucks use sideguards and other protections aimed at protecting pedestrians and cyclists.

MassBike and other safety advocacy groups have also proposed new legislation which may get attention after this hard winter. If passed, the Bike Lane Protection Bill would make it illegal to block established bike lanes. The Vulnerable Road Users Bill would define pedestrians, cyclists, emergency personal and others as vulnerable road users and define a safe-passing distance for them.

Here are a few safety tips and facts to remember for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers:

Pedestrians

  • Pedestrian accidents are too common. On average, in 2013, a pedestrian was killed every two hours and injured every eight minutes in traffic crashes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
  • Walk on the sidewalks whenever possible. If a street only has sidewalks on one side, cross over.
  • If you have to walk on the street, walk so you are facing oncoming motor vehicle traffic. Walk as close as you can to the curb to increase the space between you and traffic.
  • Use crosswalks whenever they are available.
  • Limit use of cell phones, iPods and music players.
  • A common misperception is most pedestrian accidents happen at intersections. That is not true. Some 69 percent of pedestrian accidents occurred at non-intersections in 2013, according to the NHTSA.
  • Some 10 percent of pedestrian accidents happened off the road, in areas such as parking lanes/zones, bicycle lanes, shoulders/roadsides, driveway access and similar areas.
  • In the Spring of 2013, most pedestrian fatalities, 25 percent, occurred between 9 to 11:59 p.m., according to the NHTSA. Another 22 percent occurred between 6 to 8:59 p.m.
  • If you walk at night, purchase a neon glow vest so you stand out to traffic. Even if you never wear it, it pays to be prepared.

Bicyclists

  • Wear a bike helmet which meets the safety standard of the Consumer Product Safety Commission and properly fits.
  • Cyclists follow different rules than pedestrians. Go with the flow of traffic, traveling in the same direction as cars, on the right side of the road. Up to two cyclists can ride in the middle of the traffic lane abreast if necessary to stay safe, but you should move back onto the side of the road single file when you can safely do so.
  • State law prohibits biking on sidewalks in business districts. Not every city and town has a designated business district. But assume you are not allowed to ride on the sidewalk or ask the local police department for guidance.
  • Cyclists must use hand signals to communicate to drivers, unless it would be unsafe to do so. You can view this video to learn the proper hand signals. Cyclists should also use a bell to let pedestrians know they are approaching.
  • Watch out for dooring. This is when a car parks and the driver opens their door and hits you as you pass through. It is against the law, but it happens often.
  • You are required to use a white headlight and red taillight or rear reflector if you ride anytime from a half hour after sunset until a half hour before sunrise.
  • If you ride at night, consider purchasing a neon safety vest or clothing so you are more visible drivers..
  • If you are involved in a bicycle accident, file a police report, even if you do not think you are seriously injured at first.
  • Many drivers may not stop after cycling accidents. If you are hit and the driver does not stop, immediately contact police and file a police report.

Motor Vehicle Drivers

  • Look for cyclists and pedestrians at every intersection and yield to them.
  • Drivers must pass bicyclists at a safe distance. If you cannot, you must wait until it is safe to do so or change lanes.
  • Obey all traffic laws and signals. Look for areas designated as school zones. Reduce your speed and take extra care on these roads.
  • Do not park in bike lanes.
  • Do not use your cell phone in the car. It is against the law in Massachusetts for drivers to text and drive, but the best practice is not to use it for telephone calls or other reasons either. It only takes a few seconds to cause a distracted driving car accident.
  • A very dangerous practice is dooring. This is when a driver parks their car and opens the door without looking and hits an oncoming cyclist. It is against the law and violators can be fined. But drivers may also face a steeper penalty, a personal injury lawsuit, because cyclists can be seriously injured and the injuries can require months of recovery and hospital bills.

More Cycling Safety Resources

These are just a few rules of the road. To learn more, visit:

Shifting Gears: Bicyclists and Public Safety. Produced by MassBike, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and the Boston Police Department.

Bike Safety in Massachusetts, Breakstone, White & Gluck.

What Every Massachusetts Bicyclist Needs to Know About Car Insurance, Breakstone, White & Gluck.

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The City of Somerville will finish 2014 out front among cyclists. But Cambridge, Boston and Newton are close behind.

The League of American Bicyclists recently recognized Somerville as the Top Bike Commute City in the East. In Somerville, 7.8 percent of people now commute by bike, a larger share than anywhere in the East, including New York City or Philadelphia. In Massachusetts, Cambridge, Boston and Newton also made the Top 20 list.

The League of American Bicyclists’ calculated the figures based on U.S. Census Bureau Statistics, taking into account a city’s population and number of cyclists. The League of American Bicyclists concentrates on counting everyday bike commuters who ride as their primary mode of transportation, not those who only commute a few days a week or those who ride bikes to other transit.

Nationwide, Somerville reported the fifth highest share of bike commuters. Davis, California had the largest share, with 24.5 percent. Boulder, Colorado was second with 11 percent.

In the East, Cambridge came in a close second to Somerville, counting nearly 6.5 percent of residents as bike commuters. Combined, the two neighboring cities have a population of 186,090 and 7,467 bike commuters.

Still Boston is the larger city, with nearly 645,000 residents, and has the highest number of actual bike commuters in the region. It was listed seventh on the American League of Bicyclists’ list, with nearly 2 percent of residents counted as bike commuters. This works out to roughly 6,660 people. Among U.S. cities, Boston is the ninth fastest growing spot for cycling, with commuters up 122 percent from 1990 to 2013.

Cycling is also growing across Massachusetts. The number of people commuting by bike here has increased over 100 percent since 2005, compared to 46 percent for the average U.S. state. We are eager to see what 2015 brings.

Cycle Tracks For Somerville, Cambridge and Boston
We expect to learn a lot more about cycle tracks in 2015. Boston and Cambridge both have cycle tracks, which go a step beyond traditional bike lanes and separate cyclists from traffic with curbing, shrubbery or flexposts. Many bike advocacy groups see these as a critical tool in reducing bike accidents and injuries.

Somerville is planning cycle tracks along Beacon Street, through to the Cambridge border. In recent years, the state Department of Transportation has reported the highest number of bicycle accidents in Massachusetts in this area.

Cambridge was one of the first communities in the country to build a cycle track and now has one on Vassar Street and Concord Avenue from the Alewife Brook Parkway to Blanchard Road. The recent Western Avenue reconstruction project plans also incorporated a cycle track, as well as special bicycle traffic signals.

Boston built cycle tracks on Western Avenue and Commonwealth Avenue. The city’s 5-year action plan calls for the construction of 21 miles of cycle tracks. High priority areas include the streets around the Boston Public Garden, Boylston Street in Back Bay and Malcolm X Boulevard and Massachusetts Avenue in Roxbury.

Hubway. We are always watching to see what comes out of Hubway. The City of Boston launched the popular bike share program in July 2011 and each year it has expanded and gotten residents, workers and visitors excited about cycling (and encouraged bike helmet use, which is important). The program now has 1300 bikes at 140 stations in Boston, Somerville, Cambridge and Brookline, more than doubling its original size in just a few years. Many stations have closed down for the winter, except in Cambridge. But we will watch for the bike program next Spring.

Boston Truck Ordinance. A few weeks ago, the Boston City Council approved a truck safety ordinance requiring city-contracted trucks to be outfitted with side guards, convex mirrors and blind-spot awareness decals. This first-in-the-nation measure was passed to reduce pedestrian and cycling accidents. Many locally and nationally are watching as the city begins enforcement.

Community Bike Programs. Boston has an active network of cycling groups and committees. If you are a cyclist, we encourage you to seek one out in 2015 or attend an event at Bay State Bike Week in the spring. Here is a list.

Bike Helmet Donations. Watch for us in 2015 too. Breakstone, White & Gluck will again partner with local organizations and committees to donate bike helmets to local children. In 2014 we donated over 2,000 helmets to kids and programs around the state. 2015 will be our third year of making these donations through Project KidSafe, our community service program. Read about our partners.

Related:
“Where We Ride,” American League of Bicyclists.
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20141121_bikehelmets.jpgAfter years of decline, a new report reveals that there has been an increase in the number of cyclists killed in motor vehicle accidents since 2010.

The Governors Highway Safety Administration (GHSA) released the, “Spotlight on Highway Safety: Bicyclist Safety” report on Oct. 27th. The report shows cycling deaths have increased 16 percent from 2010 to 2012, from 621 to 722 cyclist fatalities. During that time, Massachusetts saw the numbers almost double, from seven cyclist deaths in 2010 to 15 in 2012. The majority of cyclist deaths came from six states, including California, Florida, Illinois, New York, Michigan and Texas.

During this period, other deaths in motor vehicle accidents increased by just one percent.

Two thirds or more of cyclists killed in 2012 were not wearing bike helmets, “a major contributing factor” in deaths because many cyclists suffer serious head injuries, the GHSA said.

More details from the report:

Bike helmet use. Citing 2012 Fatality Analysis Reporting (FARS) data, the GHSA report showed 65 percent of cyclists who died in 2012 were not wearing a bike helmet. Meanwhile, just 17 percent of cyclists were confirmed to be wearing one. Helmet use was unknown for the remaining 18 percent.

Twenty one states, including Massachusetts, have laws mandating bike helmet use for children. But none requires helmet use for adult riders and the GHSA said use has to be encouraged.

In Boston, city officials have raised the idea of mandating bike helmet use. It would not be the first city to do so. Sykesville, Maryland requires cyclists of all ages to wear bike helmets. But such ordinances are largely controversial. Dallas, Texas passed a law mandating helmets for all ages, but city officials revised it this summer, limiting it to cyclists who are 17 and under.

As it stands in Boston, riders of the Hubway bike share must agree to wear bike helmets when they sign up. The City of Boston has actively promoted bike helmet use over the years through advertising campaigns and community outreach programs.

Breakstone, White & Gluck has also worked to increase bike helmet use among children in Massachusetts. Over the past two years, we have donated 3,000 bike helmets through community organizations. We are proud of this work and will be back in 2015.

Our program partners include: Boston Bikes’ Roll It Forward, a program run by the City of Boston, Worcester Earn a Bike, CYCLE Kids, Cambridge Public Schools, Somerville Public Schools, Bikes Not Bombs, Framingham Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee, East Arlington Livable Streets and Arlington Public Schools, Watertown Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee, Westborough Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee, Somerville Kiwanis, Dedham Bike Rodeo, Boston Cyclists Union, Arlington Town Day, Westwood Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee, Lexington Bicycle Advisory Committee and the Ashland Farmer’s Market and iCan Shine Camp of Arlington.

State safety efforts. The GHSA touched on safety improvements which communities can make and strongly encouraged development of cycle paths. These go a step further than traditional bike lanes and physically separate motor vehicle traffic from cyclists on the road with flexible posts or other safety measures.

If communities cannot add cycle paths, the GHSA suggests adding marked bike lanes, bike boxes which designate space in a lane for bikes at intersections, and separate bike traffic signals with advance lights for cyclists.

Boston has a 5-year action plan to build 21 miles of cycle tracks in various areas of the city.

Read the full report, “Spotlight on Highway Safety: Bicyclist Safety.”
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