The BikeAthens Board of Directors is proud to announce that BikeAthens has received a grant of
$63,300 from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (GOHS). Using these grant funds,
BikeAthens will conduct 48 bike safety seminars throughout the coming year. The seminars will
target 4 groups of Athens citizens most in need of bike safety education: middle school students,
UGA student groups, DUI violators, and the motoring and cycling public. BikeAthens safety
classes will help GOHS in its goal to reduce bicycle related injuries and fatalities.
A vast majority of local bicycle accidents involve cyclists that are not wearing helmets, and
riders over the age of 30 are three times as likely to wear a helmet as a cyclist under 30.
Nonetheless, bicyclists under 18 years of age account for 30% of Georgia’s bicycle fatalities. To
address this problem, BikeAthens will use a portion of the GOHS grant funds on helmets that
BikeAthens will distribute at their safety seminars and at other public outreach events during the
year. In addition to bike helmets, BikeAthens will also distribute bike lights in an effort to make
Athens cyclists visible to all. BikeAthens and GOHS expect that making bikes and their riders
brighter will reduce the number of accidents that occur during times of low light.
To ensure that BikeAthens will provide the most effective bicycle safety education, a portion of
the GOHS grant funds will go towards training BikeAthens staff in the latest bike safety
techniques. The grant will also provide monies for travel to state and national conferences, such
as the National Bike Summit. BikeAthens staff will use the information they learn at these
trainings to implement best practices to make Athens cyclists safer.
Finally, the grant will fund an Executive Director for BikeAthens. Having a full-time employee
will allow BikeAthens to more efficiently and effectively implement its new safety programs.
The Executive Director will develop the curriculum for the safety seminars and work with local
partners to make sure the programs reach as many Athenians as possible. As an organization,
BikeAthens hopes the partnership between GOHS and BikeAthens will make Athens safer for all
road users: cyclists, pedestrians, and motorists alike.