By Bike Maryland - October 25, 2022
Sarah Langenkamp was fatally injured when a truck struck her while cycling in a bike lane in Bethesda, Maryland. Her husband, Dan Langenkamp, has now organized Ride for Your Life: a free-to-join, organized bicycle ride to honor her and advocate for change.
On Saturday, November 19th, all are invited to join in a bike ride to the U.S. Congress to demand funding to improve bike infrastructure and push for regulations to improve truck safety.
October 24, 2022 — On Saturday, November 19th, Dan Langenkamp, Trek Bicycle, PeopleForBikes, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA), Families for Safe Streets, the League of American Bicyclists, Transportation Alternatives, the Truck Safety Coalition and other cycling and truck safety organizations encourage cyclists in the Washington, D.C. area to join together for the Ride for Your Life. The 10-mile bike ride to Congress is in memory of Sarah Langenkamp, a mother of two who was killed by a flatbed truck while riding home in Bethesda, Maryland in August. Propelled by her spirit, the bike ride is asking Congress for funding to support enhanced biking infrastructure and commercial truck regulations that will prevent other cyclist injuries and fatalities.
Sarah Langenkamp, a wife, mother of two boys, and Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. State Department for 17 years, died when she was hit by a flatbed truck while riding home on her bicycle from her sons’ elementary school in Bethesda, Maryland on August, 25, 2022. The crash occurred while she was riding in a clearly marked- yet unprotected- bike lane where commercial traffic competes with cyclists for space.
Sarah and Dan are both lifelong cyclists, commuting to work all over the world wherever their assignments took them. The Langenkamp family had just returned to the Washington, D.C. area after being evacuated from Ukraine, where Sarah and Dan had served the United States helping Ukraine’s fight again Russia’s full-scale invasion.
“I just can’t let Sarah’s death take place in vain,” said Dan Langenkamp. “There is no reason that a person in America should be risking their life to bike to school or work. There are easy solutions here:
connected and protected bike lanes, practical solutions we know exist to improve trucking safety, law enforcement. We know the solutions. We just need to fund and implement them.”
Pedaling on two wheels, the ride to Congress will include clear asks:
“No one should feel unsafe when riding on a bike, especially when there are simple infrastructure safety solutions. Bikes are vehicles for change, whether it’s for the environment, one’s mental or physical health, or for empowerment, and we’re using our bikes to act and ride to Congress.” said John Burke, President of Trek Bicycle.
Beginning at 10:00 a.m. EST on Saturday, November 19th, riders will travel ten miles starting at Wood Acres Elementary School, past Sarah’s crash site at 5244 River Road in Bethesda and on to Capitol Hill. There is no cost to participate in the ride, but interested cyclists are asked to register for the ride to ensure appropriate ride support and refreshments.
Langenkamp stressed his efforts aimed to complement those of organizations already dedicated to bike and trucking safety through government advocacy, public awareness, driver education, and new tech solutions.
To support the ride and other bike safety initiatives organized by Dan, visit the Bike Safety Memorial Fund website.