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2 cyclists killed in crashes prompt safety awareness

(WISH) — Two Indiana cyclists have been killed in crashes during what has been named “Bike to Work Week.”

Police say one cyclist died after a hit-and-run crash and the other was hit by a drunk driver.

As the weather gets nicer the number of cyclists on roadways will continue to grow and some are worried the number of accidents will also grow if people don’t start paying attention.

“We hear from people all of the time who have stopped riding around urban areas because they are scared of being hit by a car and dying,” said Danielle Frey, Bicycle Indiana.

It is important for both drivers and cyclists to be aware of what is expected of them on the roadway.

“You can’t fit both a bicycle and a car in the same lane safely, it is not wide enough. So just pause, calm down, and give that space to pass,” explained Frey. 

Cyclists have a right to the road and that means they are expected to follow the same rules as drivers.

“I am mostly aware about everything around me but not everybody is,” said Eleanore Rettew.

Rettew rides her bike every day around the city. She said she has had some pretty close calls, “[the drivers] are most concerned about what is in front of them.” 

“I don’t know if you ever get used to it. It is pretty terrifying and gets the adrenaline up anytime that there is close call or someone passes you too close. It’s scary,” said Frey. 

Frey said there is a common thread between car-to-car accidents and car-to-bike accidents. 

“People really need to pay attention,” she said. “And if once people are paying attention they are going to stop in time. They are going to notice things.” 

That doesn’t just apply to drivers. In order to prevent serious crashes Frey said everyone on the roadways needs to be alert. 

“It just takes a second, it just takes a second before something awful can happen,” Frey added. 

Cyclists should also be predictable when riding in traffic, making sure to signal when changing lanes or making a turn.

Bicycle Indiana has provided updated tips for drivers and cyclists to be able to safely coexist on the roadway.

You can read those tips here