For the third time in just three days, a bike rider was killed in Southern California.
And for the third time, a driver left the scene — although police were quick to excuse it.
According to the Press-Enterprise, 43-year old Lake Elsinore resident Alex Herrera was crossing Highway 74 just west of Briggs Road in Menifee around 10:45 Saturday night, when he was struck by a westbound driver, flung onto the other side of the roadway, and run over by another driver headed east.
Herrera died at the scene before police could arrive.
The first driver stopped and waited for police, though he was unsure who or what he struck on the dark roadway.
The second driver kept going without stopping, but lost his license plate in the crash. Police were able to track him down and were quick to absolve him of responsibility, suggesting he may not have known he hit anyone.
Because evidently, it’s perfectly normal to keep driving after feeling a large, unexpected bump without stopping to see what the hell it was.
Like maybe another person, for instance.
Police said there was no sign drug or alcohol intoxication played a role in the crash, and neither driver was ticketed or arrested at the scene.
There’s no word on why Herrera was crossing the highway west of the intersection with Briggs, with no street lights or businesses to light the roadway.
There’s also no indication if he had lights on his bike that would have made him visible in the darkness.
This is at least the sixth bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third that I’m aware of in Riverside County.
Drivers have left the scene in all but two of those deaths, including all three in Riverside County.
My deepest sympathy and prayers for Alex Herrera and his loved ones.