Biking advocates to install ‘ghost bike’ for cyclist killed on St. Charles Ave.

Robert "Hog" Blair

NEW ORLEANS – Local cycling activists are planning a memorial “ghost bike” event in memory of a New Orleans man who was killed while biking on St. Charles Avenue this week.

Robert “Hog” Blair was struck by a vehicle while he was riding his bike on a section of St. Charles he was known for traveling often, according to a Facebook post by Bike Uneasy and Stolen Bikes NOLA, the event’s organizers.

Blair later died at University Hospital, according to the post.

“Hog was the fifth person killed on the streets of New Orleans while riding a bike this year,” the post reads. “Tragically, Hog was killed near Please-U Restaurant and Igor’s, on that stretch of St. Charles where he was such a fixture that he was known by everyone.”

Both activist groups cite the city’s lack of dedicated bike lanes for contributing to the deaths of cyclists.

Each time a cyclist is killed, a “ghost bike” is placed near the spot of the fatal collision.

The planned November 2 event for Blair is set to begin at City Hall at 3 p.m., and the procession will end with the placement of a ghost bike in Blair’s honor across from the Please U Restaurant, according to the post.

Organizers say fatal collisions like the one that took Blair’s life “will continue to happen until this city decides that pedestrians, cyclists, and people who use public transportation deserve to get home to their families safely. Because they have not yet made that decision, we’re celebrating Hog’s life and commending yet another Ghost Bike to rest on the New Orleans neutral ground, to warn those who drive by, and remind our elected officials: Your complacency is killing us.”

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