Paul Andrews

Posts Tagged ‘cyclist killed’

Riders Down: Bad things happen in more than threes

In Bicycle advocacy, Rider Down on February 3, 2010 at 1:35 am

Sometimes they bunch together by the handful. The past week has certainly borne that out. We were mildly annoyed at the Bellingham police flak who suggested, after a rider was struck by a car making a left turn in front of him, that cyclists wear bright clothing and be careful out there to avoid being hit by drivers. Our take was that’s like telling a gunshot victim to watch out for bullets.

Since that accident, bike riders have been getting hit right and left…hook.

In Sacramento, a cyclist
was hit and dragged a quarter of a mile by an SUV whose driver was … well, let’s just say that brighter clothing and best cycling practices weren’t going to help his cause.

In Los Gatos, a cyclist was killed when an SUV jumped a curb, drove along the sidewalk, barreled through a pedestrian safety barricade and continued on till striking a light post and flipping over. Apparently the cyclist, riding slowly on a sidewalk, was not behaving safely enough. As a witness put it: “I thought please let him get out of the way. But I knew there was no way. All of a sudden there was a ton of debris and dirt after he hit the guy on the bicycle.”

No word on whether he was brightly dressed, which for some reason may have been considered irrelevant in the police investigators’ assessment of culpability.

And what would be the advice
for Jim Rogers, founder of the Tour of Nevada City Bike Shop and holder of the record for most Nevada City Bicycle Classic race competitions, who was cycling along the shoulder of Highway 174 when he was hit from behind by an SUV and killed?

Oh, OK, we’ve got it. The Bellingham flak left out a crucial step in his short list for cycling safety, one that would have prevented all of these accidents from ever happening in the first place. That being: Don’t ride where SUVs are present.

Spread the word…


Officer down, another rider dead; no citation issued

In Bicycle advocacy, Bicycling, Rider Down on March 11, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Arizona Star: “The off-duty officer killed while bike riding Tuesday has been identified as 26-year-old Allen D. Johnson…”

This one is hard to figure. A police officer of all people should know the rules of the road. And a fellow police officer at the scene might be expected to issue a citation if there was cause. Plus the victim was struck from behind. We’ll try to track this one.

Riders Down: Two More Good People Are Gone

In Bicycle Commuting, Rider Down on March 10, 2009 at 11:46 am

This one especially hurts: A fellow journalist and a contemporary, one whose newspaper just shut down last week, is dead after being involved in a bicycling accident last Friday. Friends of Rocky Mountain News reporter James Meadow have set up a Facebook page with lots of memories, condolences and stories. Apparently he was literally “just riding along” and suddenly fell. He was wearing a helmet at the time.

Front says It's the LAW

Front says It's the LAW

Also last Friday, David Meek, past president of the Chattanooga Bicycle Club and an experienced, safety-conscious rider, was killed when his bike’s saddle bag got hooked by a passing truck. Incidents like this cry out for at a minimum aggressive enforcement of the three-foot rule, giving cyclists at least a yard of clearance when passing. Washington State is considering three-foot legislation. “3 Feet Please” offers jerseys and I’ve seen bumper stickers as well. At present Florida, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Oregon, Illinois, Tennessee, Minnesota, Utah, Wisconsin, Arizona, South Carolina, Oklahoma and Maine have 3-feet laws, according to the group, and Canada is working on legislation as well.