Four years ago... cycling saved Steve Dubin's life. "I had a heart attack and I needed to do some exercise and it was the only exercise I enjoyed. So that's why I started riding," Dubin explains. He has shed forty pounds but gained a lot of insight about the dangers lurking on area roads. "I have modified where I ride. I now ride on much more deserted streets than I used to. I ride in North Augusta on the Greeneway and thru neighborhoods."
His riding partner Ed Leahy has had to switch gears as well in the name of safety. "Usually if I'm mountain biking 15 miles and if I'm road biking like 25. I do a lot more mountain biking now because the roads have gotten progressively less safe around here," says Leahy.
But, the Georgia Office of Highway Safety is trying to put the brakes on cycling danger and fatalities. According to the Office of Highway Safety.. Crashes involving bicycles took 14 lives in 2011 and 18 lives in 2012. That's a 28 percent increase year to year. This year, cycling advocates are trying to slow those numbers down and save lives.
Phil Cohen owns Chain Reaction Bicycles. He says, "the good thing is more people are using their bicycles, the bad thing is we're having more accidents." Cohen also says his shop put into motion safety guidelines when teaching people to ride. He says it's important that cyclists and drivers co-exist and live by some common sense rules. "Make sure your bike is fitted properly so you're not riding a bike that is too big or too small. Make sure that you're riding on the correct side of the road which is the right side of the road just like an automobile. You obey the same laws that a vehicle does."
Bicycling enthusiasts Michael Masterson says "trails are good. The roads out here are a hazard."
Since cycling saved Steve Dubin's life, he has a warning to keep other lives spinning in the right direction. "Having fallen and had a concussion, I hate to think what would have happened without a helmet and be very aware of traffic," Dubin says.
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