Cyclists riding for honor and awareness - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Cyclists riding for honor and awareness

HONOLULU (KHNL) - A hit and run incident early Tuesday morning that killed an 18-year-old Wahiawa cyclist is serving as a chilling reminder for bikers that there needs to be more awareness and accessibility on the roads.

Through a ride of silence, a group of more the twenty cyclists say it's important to honor the life of David Aldridge II.  Earlier this week he lost his life and the cycling community says that's one too many.

Sounding off support, for cyclers, it's a symbol of solidarity.

 "We are a tight-knit community, what we try to do on the roads is have respect for all other motorists and a respectful ride with Aloha spirit," said Hawaii Bicycling League's Mitchell Nakagawa.

But it's not always a shared spirit. Just ask Kimo Bullard.

 "I was crossing the street in Pearl City. There were 13 cars out there. 12 of them stopped for me, number 13th didn't," said the cyclist.

 "As a bicyclist when I get on the road I'm entering into what many would call a warzone," said "One Voice" spokesman Justin Fanslau.

Fanslau's "One Voice Coalition" came together to see the Charter Amendment 8 initiative pass two years ago. With many parts of the city still untouched, bike advocates say it's time to kick into a gear a push to lobby lawmakers for accessibility upgrades.

 "This week's tragedy tells us that we need to do more and ask tougher questions," said Fanslau.

But you won't hear answers from these advocates. Their silent 3-mile ride around downtown was even forced into the streets because of the lack of bike lanes. But, they're hopeful the event routes a replenished effort to engage awareness.

 "What needs to be done is education. Us guys and the guys driving those cars. Too many people are getting hurt nowadays," said Cyclist Kimo Bullard.

Banding together for better bike and pedestrian accessibility, this group is focused on their finish line.

Bikers wore red and black bands around their arms to show unity. With the death of a Kaneohe bicyclist last month and now Tuesday's incident, the Department of Transportation says the city has seen more cyclist deaths on the road this year than all of 2007.

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