Boston University pedals safety in wake of bicycle accidents

Bicycle accidents claimed the lives of two Boston University students last year, and with warm weather approaching, city and school officials recently unveiled a new plan to help keep riders safe. Boston officials along with authorities from BU announced that Commonwealth Avenue will be getting a facelift to better protect bicyclists.

According to the mayor of Boston, the bicycle safety project on the BU campus could pave the way to similar projects throughout the city if it proves successful. Although with more “cautionary signs,” officials say they plan to place better bike lane pavement markings and highway reflectors on Commonwealth Avenue, which skirts the university.

The president of Boston University released a statement saying that he is hopefully that the changes to Commonwealth Avenue will “protect bicyclists and pedestrians traveling along this very busy stretch” of road. He added that he is “extremely grateful for the city’s continued support of bike-safety initiatives that safeguard all people who use the city streets that pass through our campus.”

BU students were able to familiarize themselves with the changes and other bicycle safety programs offered by the university when they returned from spring break. Free helmets, flashlights, bicycle lights and reflectors are said to be available to students, along with bike-safety classes.

In December of last year, a 23-year-old BU student was killed when her bike collided with a tractor trailer at the corner of St. Paul Street and Commonwealth Avenue. Just a month before that, another BU student was killed when his bike collided with a MBTA bus in the same area. Overall, there were five fatal bicycle accidents in Boston last year.

Source: Boston Magazine, “Boston University, Mayor’s Office Roll Out Improved Bike-Safety Measures,” Steve Annear, March 18, 2013