Cycling: Safety is top priority for 2009 Tour

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By Mike Cote

Following a recent bicycle-riding accident near Technical Area-16, safety measures for the upcoming Tour de Los Alamos have been ramped up.

The Tour de Los Alamos, celebrating it 37th running this year, will be held Sunday along N.M. 501, N.M. 502 and N.M. 4.

Approximately 200 riders are expected to take part in the road race.

Due to the accident involving a biker — who was scheduled to take part in the race — and a minivan, which occurred June 29, organizers are taking a good, long look at safety along the route.

“One positive thing that we’ve had is that a lot of volunteers have come out to be on the course,” race official Carolyn Zerkle said.

Zerkle said approximately 150 people have volunteered during the race, which starts at 8:20 a.m. Sunday. That’s half-again more than the number of volunteers than the Tour de Los Alamos typically has.

The spike in volunteerism, Zerkle said, is due in no small part to the June 29 accident.

The accident is currently under investigation by local police and will be turned over to the District Attorney’s office for review, the police department has told the Monitor.

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