About 50 people, including Portland’s mayor, gathered last week to mark the unveiling of a unique spot: a shrine dedicated to Portland bicyclists by St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, along with the introduction by the church of a formal ‘bicycle liturgy’, according to a recent article in The Oregonian.
Central to the shrine is a ‘ghost bike’ covered in flowers and dedicated to the memory of a young Portland cyclist who was struck by a car and died in an Oregon bicycle accident in 2007. Mayor Sam Adams told those attending the service that “out of the great tragedy of (Tracey) Sparlings death emerged the city’s bike boxes, designed to prevent more right-hook turns like the one that killed” her, the newspaper reported. According to the church publication Episcopal Life, Sparlings was struck and killed by a cement truck which failed to see her while turning. The driver of the truck was not prosecuted.
The event was a reminder that even in Portland – often regarded as one of the most bike-friendly cities in the country – riders often find themselves endangered by drivers who are not keeping an eye out for cyclists.
According to Episcopal Life the Portland bike shrine is believed to be the only one of its kind. The liturgy used for the first time last week refers to it as “a place of prayer and memory in support of those in our community who travel by bicycle and in supplication for the safety of everyone on our streets.”
Bicycles have a right to be on our roads, just as much as do cars and trucks. Similarly, riders injured in an Oregon bicycle accident have the same rights to justice as victims of Oregon auto accidents. A Portland bicycle accident lawyer familiar with the ins and outs of Oregon’s traffic laws and how they apply to cyclists can help you determine the best way forward after a Portland bike and car accident. Oregon cycling injuries, especially those resulting from an auto accident, can cause both mental and physical trauma. Holding irresponsible motorists to account is one of the best things we can do to help make the streets safer for everyone.
Episcopal Life Online: OREGON: Portland church unveils bicycle liturgy