A bad year for Orange County bike riders just continues to get worse.
According to multiple sources, a 33-year old man was killed riding his bike in Fullerton Monday evening.
The victim, who hasn’t been publicly identified, was riding in the area of Bastanchury Road and Lancer Way when he was struck by a Mercedes-Benz driver headed south on Bastanchury around 5:43 pm.
He was pronounced dead after being taken to a local hospital.
The driver remained at the scene, and Fullerton police do not believe drug or alcohol use played a role in the crash.
Unfortunately, that’s all the information we have at this time. No word on how the crash happened, or whether the victim had lights on his bike after dark.
However, an email from Lois adds a few more thoughts.
This is a super dangerous crossing where a downhill proceeds to a right turn on a busy road with no clearance. Mountain bikers with no road riding experience frequently cross to the far side and ride salmon style to make the next left back to the Fullerton Loop. There’s a much safer but slightly longer and less exciting route to get to the same place. It has a light at the crossing. Maybe the city should have a sign to direct the Loop riders in that direction but many still won’t take it.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Accident Investigator H. Barclay of the Fullerton Police Department at 714/738-6815.
This is at least the 60th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 16th that I’m aware of in Orange County, which has seen an already too-high average of 12 bicycling deaths in recent years.
That puts it neck-and-neck with Los Angeles County, which has also seen 16 bike deaths this year, with over three times the population.
Update: The victim has been identified as 33-year old Joshua Pumphrey, who was killed just two weeks after he’d gotten married.
The Fullerton Observer explains how the crash happened.
Pumphrey was in a group of 11 riders on the “Fullerton Loop,” a popular series of interconnected local bike trails that sometimes cross major streets. According to witnesses, as the group of riders headed westbound on Valley View to Bastanchury, they turned right and hugged the right curb as cars were coming their same direction, northbound. The cars passed and the group merged across northbound traffic to the left turn lane which would put them westbound on Lancer Way. It was then that Pumphrey was struck by the car.
A crowdfunding campaign has raised over $43,000 in just one week to pay Pumphrey’s funeral expenses, more than double the $21,000 goal.
My deepest sympathy and prayers forJoshua Pumphrey and his loved ones.
Thanks to Lois for the heads-up.