When Westword Photographer Evan Semón considered places where he could photograph e-bike owner Emily Kleinfelter For our July 5 article on Denver’s e-bike giveaway program, he thought the State Capitol would make a good backdrop. bottom.
Semón suggested that the two meet at East Ninth Avenue and Sherman Street so he could take pictures of Kleinfelter in full view with the Capitol in the background. “It kinda reminds me of that funny picture people post when they go to the Eiffel Tower, leaning on the Eiffel Tower,” says Semón. But when Kleinfelter showed up on his newly purchased FattE-Bike, it turned out there was nothing funny about the location.
On May 14, at that exact intersection, Kleinfelter had been hit by a car while riding a scooter toward the Colfax Overpass First Night Market.
“I was taking a Lyft scooter there, and I was on Sherman, taking a left on Ninth to go down the hill, and the person driving the car was parked on the side of the road and, I thought, was going to be out out of their parking spot,” Kleinfelter recalled. “They ended up doing a complete U-turn out of their parking spot and back towards me. I jumped off the scooter at the last moment, but the scooter ended up under the car.”
Kleinfelter says the driver kept insisting he hadn’t seen her. And then, once he realized she wasn’t hurt, he left.
Semón choosing this exact spot was a strange coincidence. “I think she was really thinking about it. I could tell it must have been quite an experience,” says Semón.
He ended up taking a few shots of Kleinfelter from different angles. In one, she rode her bike to ninth toward the intersection with Sherman Street.
“This Suburban is falling apart while we’re turning, Sherman yells,” Semón recalled, recounting how Kleinfelter yelled “Slow down!” to the commuter driver.
The May 14 accident was the fourth time Kleinfelter had been nailed by a car while riding a scooter or bicycle. A Vision Zero Safety and Area Planner for the Denver Regional Council of Governments, she frequently uses alternative means of transportation and used a discount from the city of Denver to purchase her new e-bike. She speaks from experience when she points out the flaws in Denver’s infrastructure.
“Vulnerable road users – by which I mean people who are not protected by the metal box of an automobile – do not have the same priority for our lives and our safety,” Kleinfelter said. “It’s disheartening. Honestly, with the number of miles I’ve put in, I think people who know me know I’m saying, ‘My ultimate death will probably come at the hands of a motorist, because we don’t give the putting people’s lives first. outside a metal box.'”