It’s our sad job to let you know that Wisconsin has just experienced its seventh bike fatality of the year. An eleven-year old boy died as the result of a crash on University Avenue in Madison on Monday morning.
On behalf of the entire Wisconsin Bike Fed family, our members, board members and staff we send our heartfelt condolences to his family and young friends.
Wisconsin experiences ten bike fatalities in a typical year so we are, unfortunately, ahead of pace. And, in fact, overall crashes and fatalities involving all vehicles are the highest they’ve been at this point in the year since 2012, reversing a two-year downward trend. While we don’t know why this is happening, it could be that there is more travel overall due to lower gas prices and other trends.
The poignancy of the latest death is highlighted by the fact that the governor signed a budget bill on Sunday that repeals Wisconsin’s successful Complete Streets law. While we don’t yet know the details of Monday’s tragedy we do know that Complete Streets have saved lives. It was senseless to repeal the law and it seems even more unconscionable in light of this latest fatality.