April is already off the a bad start, after a remarkably safe first three months of the year for Southern California bike riders.
According to the Orange County Register, a bike rider was killed Wednesday evening in a collision with a truck in Anaheim.
Very few details are available at this point.
The victim was hit by a truck around 7:15 pm at the intersection of Orangewood Ave and Harbor Blvd. Anaheim police arrived at the location to discover that the victim had been pronounced dead at the scene by members of the Garden Grove fire department.
No word on how the collision occurred, or the identity of the victim. Needless to say, the truck driver was uninjured.
A satellite view shows a bike lane on Orangewood east of Harbor, but none to the west of the busy intersection, and no bike lanes in either direction on Harbor.
This is the 11th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first in Orange County. That compares with 28 in SoCal, and five in Orange County this time last year.
Update: The Register reports the victim has been identified as 42-year old Timothy Binau; no city of residence was given.
An update to the original story says Binau was riding south on Harbor when he was hit by a southbound tanker truck. The paper reports investigators aren’t sure how the collision occurred.
Photos show he was riding a mountain bike, but don’t give any insight into the collision.
However, raw video from the scene shows the covered body of the victim lying by the right curb several feet before the intersection, and police examining the middle of the rear tanker trailer of the truck. (Warning — the unedited video may be too graphic for some viewers.)
That suggests that the rider may have been sideswiped by the trailer or right hooked as the truck prepared to turn. However, there may be other possible explanations for how the wreck took place.
What is highly unlikely is the Register’s suggestion in the headline that the victim “crashed into” the truck.
Update 2: I’m told that Binau lived in the Anaheim area, and may not have had lights on his bike as the sun was setting at the time of the collision.
I’m also told the tuck driver was so disturbed by the collision that he was taken to a hospital for observation.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Timothy Binau and his or her loved ones.