Word is just coming in that a bicyclist was killed near San Diego State University this afternoon.
Details are pending; however, the collision is variously reported to have occurred sometime around 3:30 to 3:45 pm on Montezuma Road near Collwood Blvd. The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was reportedly riding east in the bike lane on Montezuma when he was hit from behind by a Chrysler SUV.
The driver stayed at the scene and called authorities to report the collision. Police report no drugs or alcohol were involved.
Photos from the scene show the victim’s bike on the sidewalk, as well as a shrouded body several feet off the road; San Diego 6 reports his body was recovered from a ravine, which would suggest a high speed impact.
This is the 13th cycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 3rd this month, after just one in March; it’s also the 3rd bicycling death in San Diego since the first of the year. Yesterday I inadvertently wrote that Larry Schellhase was the 10th cyclist killed this year; his death was actually the 12th.
My prayers and sympathy for the victim and his loved ones. Thanks to Bill Davidson for calling this to my attention.
Update: The San Diego Union-Tribune puts the time of the collision at 3:34 pm, and confirms that the victim was riding in the bike lane. Meanwhile, Sam Ollinger of Bike San Diego forwards word that the area has a long history for speeding drivers.
Update 2: The victim has been identified as 63-year old Charles Raymond Gilbreth; he was pronounced dead at the scene at 3:52 pm. The San Diego Medical Examiner’s Office reports that he was married and lived within the city of San Diego; the report confirms that he was hit by an SUV and thrown onto the side of the road.
A comment on Bike San Diego says that the SUV driver became impatient following behind a bus, and used the bike lane to go around it; the writer says the SUV hit Gilbreth’s bike and threw him in front of the bus, which then ran over him. However, it’s important to note that the description of the rider being run over by a bus doesn’t fit with the ME’s report, or explain why his body was found off the side of the road instead of than within the traffic lanes as would be expected under such circumstances.
Hopefully the SDPD will release more information when their investigation is complete, and the press will follow-up so we can understand what actually happened and why.
Meanwhile, Carlos Morales of the Eastside Bike Club forwards word that L.A. police are on the lookout for a hit-and-run driver who left a 60-year old cyclist critically injured.
On April 7, 2012, at 6:25 p.m., a 60-year-old male was riding his bicycle southbound on Duarte Street at 57th Street, when he was struck by a vehicle traveling southbound on Duarte Street. The suspect fled without rending aid to the victim. The victim is hospitlaized at a local hospital in critical condition.
If you have information to report that could help lead to an arrest in this crime/crime activity, please contact the police at (213) 972-1825.