Tag Archive for Riverside County

Man killed riding bike in Rancho Mirage collision; second fatal Coachella Valley bicycle crash in two weeks

Maybe it’s time to ask what the hell is going on in the Coachella Valley.

Because for the second time in less than two weeks, a Coachella Valley bike rider has been killed in a collision, this time in Rancho Mirage.

According to the Desert Sun, the victim was riding east across busy Bob Hope Drive in the crosswalk on Casino, in front of the Agua Caliente Casino, round 1:30 pm Friday when he was struck by the driver of a car headed north on Bob Hope.

The man, identified only as an elderly man or senior citizen, died after being taken to a local hospital.

There’s no word on who had the green light, or why the driver apparently didn’t notice an older man on a bicycle in the crosswalk directly in front of him.

The driver stayed at the scene and cooperated with police, and did not appear to be under the influence.

This comes less than two weeks after a Canadian man was fatally injured in a collision just eleven miles away in Indian Wells — at least the fourth bike rider killed in the Coachella Valley in the last year, according to the Desert Sun.

Which would make this man the fifth bicyclist to die in the valley, where surface streets are too often designed like freeways, encouraging drivers to exceed the already too high speed limits.

And what little bicycling infrastructure there is does far too little to keep riders safe.

Anyone with any information is urged to call the Riverside County Sheriff’s department at 760/836-1600.

This is at least the 18th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third I’m aware of in San Bernardino County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 77-year old Palm Springs resident Jack Peterson.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the victim and his loved ones.

Canadian man dies days after rear-ending minivan in Indian Wells bike crash

Sometimes these things just don’t make any sense.

Earlier this week, we mentioned that a bike rider was in critical condition after apparently rear-ending a stopped minivan in Indian Wells.

Unfortunately, I’ve just received word that he didn’t make it.

According to News Channel 3, the victim was riding west on Highway 111 near Province Way in Indian Wells when he somehow rear-ended a stopped minivan around 10:52 Monday morning.

An email from the Desert Bicycle Club identifies the victim as 68-year old Paul Jackson, a part-time resident from Calgary, Canada.

He’s described as a very experienced cyclist, which makes this tragedy that much harder to understand.

It’s possible that the minivan was parked and Jackson didn’t see it for some reason. Or it’s equally possible that the driver may have come to a sudden stop after cutting him off, or he could have somehow been forced into the rear of the van.

Or any number of possible explanations.

Unfortunately, we may never know unless a witness other than the driver comes forward.

A street view shows a separated lane on HIghway 111, but it appears to be a curbside parking lane, rather than a bike lane.

Anyone with information is urged to call Officer Conoway of the Indian Wells Police Department Traffic Team at 760/836-1600.

This is at least the 15th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the second I’m aware of in Riverside County; in fact, it’s the second in the county in just the past week.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Paul Jackson and all his family and loved ones.

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Update: Riverside road cyclist left dying in the street by hit-and-run driver

Yet another Southern California bike rider has been killed by a cowardly hit-and-run driver.

According to the Riverside Press-Enterprise, Riverside police found the 53-year old victim lying in the westbound bike lane on Victoria Avenue, just west of Myers Street, around 7:45 Saturday morning, after receiving a report of a bicyclist down.

He was transported to a local hospital, where he died.

Police initially thought the man, who has not been publicly identified, had fallen off his bicycle. However, hospital officials reported his injuries were consistent with being hit by a motor vehicle.

Unfortunately, no witnesses have come forward, so there is no description of the suspect or the vehicle used in the crime.

Video from the scene shows a black road bike and silver helmet lying on the side of the road.

Screen grab from KTLA report

No other information is available at this time.

Regardless of how the crash may have happened, there is simply no excuse, ever, for leaving a crash victim bleeding in the street. The driver should face a murder charge for making a conscious decision to let the victim die, rather than calling for help and providing assistance as the law requires.

We’ll never know if he might have survived if he’d gotten help right away.

Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Zach Fishell at 951-826-8723, or email [email protected]

Let’s hope they find the coward responsible for this crash. And that prosecutors treat this needless death with the seriousness it demands.

This is at least the 14th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first I’m aware of in Riverside County.

Update: The Press-Enterprise has identified the victim as 52-year old Riverside resident Brian Sabel.

Despite wearing a helmet, he died of a head injury at Riverside Community Hospital roughly 45 minutes after he was found in the roadway.

No word on how long he had been lying there before help arrived.

This would appear to be his Strava profile.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Brian Sabel and his loved ones.

Thanks to John McBrearty for the heads-up.

Update: Rancho Mirage bicyclist killed by speeding driver in possible road rage incident

Call it an act of self-defense. 

If you believe the driver, that is. 

According to Palm Springs TV station News Channel 3, a bike rider was killed in Rancho Mirage this morning by a speeding driver, who claims he was trying to get away from someone who was attempting to run him off the road. 

Sure, let’s go with that. 

The victim was struck at the intersection of Ramon Road and Rattler Road around 6:49 am. A photographer for the station who witnessed the crash reported that the victim was rear-ended as he was riding east on Ramon Road, with the force of the impact sending him cartwheeling through the air. 

He died at the scene. A Facebook post identifies him as road cyclist Will Campbell

The young driver of the white Honda Accord reportedly overcorrected as he was speeding down the road, swerving to the right and slamming into Campbell’s bike. He was handcuffed and taken into custody. 

Another driver reportedly stopped at a gas station a little further down the road, lending credence to reports that a second vehicle was involved. 

While road rage is a possibility, street racing is as well, especially since the crash occurred near a high school. 

street view shows Ramon Road is a six lane virtual highway, with a bike lane on the eastbound side. The street has a 55 mph speed limit, which the reporter at the scene says drivers frequently exceed.

This is at least the 50th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fifth that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

Campbell’s death is the second fatal bicycling crash in Rancho Mirage this year, and the fifth on deadly Ramon Road since 2015. 

Update: A party will be held at 5 pm tomorrow at the La Quinta Brewery to celebrate Will Campbell’s life.

My deepest sympathy and prayer for Will Campbell and all his loved ones.

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Bike rider killed in Beaumont hit-and-run; alleged DUI driver arrested on murder charge

A man has been killed in a Beaumont crash, and an alleged drunk driver is behind bars.

And probably will be for a very long time.

According to the Beaumont-Banning Patch, 60-year old Banning resident Dale Ramquist was riding on Oak Valley Parkway near Palmer Avenue around 5:50 pm Sunday when he was run down from behind.

The driver of the pickup reportedly drifted into the bike lane Ramquist was riding in due to his level of intoxication. He fled the scene, then returned an hour and a half later.

Police arrested 25-year old Beaumont resident Kyle Lee Anson on suspicion of felony murder, hit-and-run and driving under the influence.

The murder count suggests that he has a previous DUI, and had received a Watson warning stating that he could be charged with murder if he killed someone while driving under the influence.

And yes, Ramquist was wearing a helmet, and had lights on his road bike.

Anyone with information is urged to contact CHP Officer Darren Meyer at 951/769-2000.

This is at least the 47th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fifth that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Dale Ramquist and his loved ones. 

Thanks to Marven Norman for the heads-up.

 

Bike rider killed in early morning Perris collision on Friday the 13th

Note: Due to this death in Perris last week, and Monday’s fatality in El Cajon, there won’t be any Morning Links today. We’ll catch up on everything tomorrow.

Somehow, we missed this one last weekend.

According to the Riverside County News Source, a bike rider was killed in a pre-dawn collision in Perris Friday morning.

The victim, identified as 30-year old Perris resident Raul Sangerman Otiz, was attempting to cross Perris Blvd on or near the Ramona Expressway when he was stuck by the driver of a northbound vehicle around 5:45 am Friday.

He was taken to a nearby hospital, where he died of his injuries.

A street view shows northbound Perris Blvd has two through lanes, with a right turn bay and double left turn lanes; the southbound side has three through lanes with both left and right turn lanes.

There’s no word on which direction Otiz was traveling, or which party had the right-of-way. Either Otiz or the unidentified driver had to have gone through the red light, although it’s possible the light could have changed while he was crossing the wide intersection before he could get to the other side.

Police do not suspect that drugs or alcohol played a role in the collision.

This is at least the 25th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fourth that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Raul Sangerman Otiz and all his loved ones.

 

Bicyclist dies after Palm Desert collision; both victim and driver worked for Marriott Resort

This past Tuesday, we mentioned that a bike rider had been seriously injured in a collision with a driver while riding in Palm Desert.

As often happens with reports from the Inland Empire, there was no information available.

For once, however, there was a follow-up report. Sadly, the news isn’t good.

Palm Spring’s KESQ-TV reports that the victim, identified as Diana Lynn Young, has died as a result of the crash.

According to the story, Young was a seven-year employee of JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa. While it’s not mentioned, I’m told that the driver also worked for the resort.

The collision occurred around 6:10 Monday morning on eastbound Country Club Drive, between Cook Street and Portola Avenue, which is directly in front of the resort.

While there is a painted curbside bike lane, it’s on a street with a 50 mph speed limit, meaning any collision with a bicyclist or a pedestrian is likely to be fatal.

This is at least the 21st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for the Diana Lynn Young and her loved ones. 

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

Update: Bike rider killed in Rancho Mirage; driver may have drifted into bike lane

More bad news today.

According to KESQ-3, a man was killed in a collision while riding his bike in Rancho Mirage this morning.

The victim, identified only as an adult man, was struck near the intersection of Bob Hope Drive and Ginger Rodgers at 10:13 am.

He died at the scene.

The driver stopped after the crash, and was cooperating with investigators. Police do not think drugs or alcohol played a role in the crash.

The Desert Sun reports the crash occurred on a relatively desolate stretch of northbound Bob Hope Drive. The victim was found several feet from his bike, with a heavily damaged utility truck stopped nearby.

A street view shows two wide, straight traffic lanes in each direction on Bob Hope, with a 50 mph speed limit, and an unprotected gutter bike lane on each side.

According to KMIR-TV, the driver may have drifted into the bike lane.

This is at least the 14th bicycling fatality in Southern California, and the second in Riverside County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 74-year old Victoria, British Colombia, resident Peter Harvey.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Peter Harvey and his loved ones. 

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up. 

Morning Links: Vision Zero motion held over to next week, LA Fountain Ave road rage assault caught on video

Good piece from Streetsblog’s Joe Linton on last week’s Vision Zero motion at the LA City Council Transportation Committee.

Despite the fears created by traffic safety deniers Keep LA Moving, the anticipated ambush didn’t occur.

In fact, I was told by someone from committee Chair Mike Bonin’s office that the motion is a benign attempt to make people feel more comfortable with the data used for LA’s Vision Zero.

And no one seems to know why Keep LA Moving felt such urgency to support it.

Bonin wisely held the motion over to the next meeting on February 28th to give its authors a chance to review the language, and make sure there’s nothing in it that would reduce the effectiveness of Vision Zero.

My fear is that it may give Vision Zero opponents an excuse to challenge the data used for the program, possibly in court.

However, I’ve been told that it’s been reviewed by the City Attorney’s office, who didn’t find any problems with it.

Although it wouldn’t hurt to do it again.

………

It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from Wes High, who recently had the pleasure of a punishment pass, followed by getting deliberately doored while riding on Fountain Ave in Los Angeles.

While riding on the sharrows.

Hopefully, he’s reported this to the LAPD, since this is clear evidence of assault with a deadly weapon — in this case, a motor vehicle.

And it’s perfect evidence for a case under LA’s cyclist anti-harassment ordinance.

………

A Facebook post is circulating asking for any witnesses to last week’s death of cyclist Mark Kristofferson in the Tour of Palm Springs to contact the Riverside County District Attorney’s office.

They’re particularly looking for anyone who saw the suspect vehicle before the crash, witnessed the actual crash or had contact with the suspect afterwards.

Especially if you have video footage of the any of the above.

The link includes instructions on how to handle the footage and who to send it to.

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

………

Local

Sounds like fun. Buried among the restaurant news is word of a Long Beach Ride & Dine to a local restaurant — and possible stops for ice cream and beer — tomorrow night.

 

State

The San Diego Union-Tribune says the city’s goal of getting 22% of residents who live within half a mile of transit to walk, bike or take public transportation to work by 2020 is a fantasy.

San Diego opens another mile of the Bayshore Bikeway; 16 miles of the planned 24-mile route around San Diego Bay are now open.

No windshield bias here. Montclair decides to blame the victims by making it illegal to cross the street while texting, talking on your phone or listening to ear buds. And yes, that’s just as idiotic as it sounds.

 

National

The Adventure Cycling Association offers a not-so-brief history of fat bikes.

HuffPo examines the efforts to bring bike equity to bikeshare.

Streetsblog examines how Baltimore bike lane opponents used a 20-foot minimum standard street width for fire engines to block a planned protected bike lane network. Even though it’s never been a problem before, in a city where many streets don’t meet that standard.

Heartbreaking news from Austin TX, where writer Andrew Tillin was killed in a collateral damage bike crash, when two cars collided and slid into his as he was fixing a flat on the side of the road. He was a frequent contributor to Outside, and the author of The Doper Next Door.

 

International

Riding to Che’s hideout in the hills of Cuba.

An Ottawa, Canada columnist can’t imagine why anyone would object to a decision to ban bikes from the city’s new light rail line during rush hour. Apparently, he’s never heard that bikes offer a solution to the first mile/last mile problem, which helps get more people out of their cars.

Bicycling is the leading form of rush hour transportation in London, where all other forms of transportation have decreased 30%. Which goes to show what is possible when you build a safe bicycling network, as London did with their cycle superhighways. Especially in Los Angeles, where the weather is much better.

A trio of very cool looking cylindrical glass bike storage towers has made the short list in a competition to remake a London roundabout.

Caught on video: An elderly man in the UK was pushed off his bike by jerks in a passing car, who apparently thought it was funny.

Even in bike-unfriendly Mumbai, a bike barely loses a race across town.

Note to world: Not every group of people on bikes riding together is a race. Sometimes they just ride to raise funds, or call attention to a cause, or just for the hell of it. Even in Afghanistan.

Sydney, Australia is cutting parking spots and increasing bicycle facilities in an effort to reduce traffic congestion.

This is why you need a camera on your bike. An Aussie motorcyclist has lost his license for 18 months and will have to attend anger management classes after a close pass and road rage assault on a pair of cyclists.

Seriously? Bike tourists in New Zealand are told not to ride at night to avoid the summer heat because it puts those poor, vulnerable truck drivers at risk.

Dockless bikeshare has saved China $2.6 billion in reduced traffic costs in just two years.

A Swiss father and stepmom rode their bikes 10,000 miles to watch their son compete in the PyeongChang OlympicsBut Angelenos think people people won’t bike five miles to go to work.

 

Finally…

Bike shop by day, bands at night. A two-wheeled Malaysian quokka encounter.

And now you can own bike the Queen was too ashamed to let Princess Diana.

 

Update: Man killed by alleged speeding driver in Tour de Palm Springs, 2nd rider injured; 2nd death in four years

It’s happened again.

One man was killed, and another bicyclist seriously injured, when they were struck by an allegedly speeding driver during today’s Tour de Palm Springs.

According to the Desert Sun, the victims were struck when a speeding driver lost control of his car on Dillon Road in Indio Hills, south of Tinker Road, around 9:25 am.

However, that location doesn’t show up using any map site.

The paper reports the driver came up from behind a number of cyclists as they were riding east on Dillon, allegedly traveling at over 100 mph — twice the posted speed limit. He veered onto the dirt shoulder on the wrong side of the road, lost control and veered back across the road to hit the two riders.

The crash reportedly occurred among the trailing riders on the century ride.

Fortynine-year old Lake Stevens, Washington, resident Mark Kristofferson died at the scene.

The other victim was airlifted with serious injuries, while the driver was transported to a local hospital by ambulance.

The case is still being investigated, and no charges have been filed at this time.

This the second death in the 20-year history of the Tour de Palm Springs. It comes just four years after 55-year old La Vonne Koester of Alta Loma was killed during the 2014 edition of annual event, when she allegedly ran a stop sign.

However, other reports indicated that a driver had stopped to wave a group of riders through the intersection, when a second driver came up from behind and was unable to stop before plowing into the riders.

No one was ever charged in that case.

This is the seventh bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in Riverside County.

Update: The Desert Sun has updated their story to say 21-year old Desert Hot Springs resident Ronnie R. Huerta Jr. has been arrested on a charge of vehicular manslaughter.

The story also corrects Kristofferson’s age as 49, rather than 54 as originally reported; that change has been made to this story, as well.

The second victim has been identified as 50-year old Alyson Lee Akers of Huntington Beach. She is being treated for what is described as major injuries, including a head laceration.

Huerta was also treated for moderate injuries before being taken to jail on the manslaughter charge, where he is currently being held.

Update 2: At the request of Mark Kristofferson’s family, I have removed a bike cam video of the crash scene taken half an hour after the collision, which briefly showed the tarp covering his body. 

Update 3: According to the Desert Sun, CHP investigators report the driver did not appear to be under the influence at the time of the crash, but are still waiting for the results of drug and alcohol tests. 

Huerta was released on $75,000 bond, and isn’t expected to appear in court until April. 

The crash location was corrected to Dillon Road near Avenue 30. The story reports that there were several police officers stationed at key intersections along the route, but none along the 25-mile stretch where the crash occurred.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Mark Kristofferson and his loved ones. And best wishes to Alyson Lee Akers for a full and fast recovery.

Thanks to Tom Morash and Wes R for the heads-up.

%d bloggers like this: