Archive for Bicycle Safety

Update: Mountain biker killed in Escondido hit-and-run; victim hit head-on during group ride

Yet another SoCal bike rider has lost his life to a hit-and-run driver.

According to multiple sources, the victim was struck by a driver at 11:52 Saturday morning on the 1600 block of La Honda Drive, just below the entrance to the Daley Ranch Recreation Area.

Reports indicated he was headed south on the narrow street with a group of other riders when he was hit head-on by the driver of a dark colored Toyota sedan, who continued without stopping.

The victim, identified only as a 36-year old Vista resident, died at the scene before rescuers could arrive.

Police later found the heavily damaged car abandoned half a mile away, on the 600 block of Aster Street.

They note the victim was wearing a helmet; clearly, it was not enough to save his life.

Meanwhile, the San Diego Union-Tribune absurdly reports that police don’t know if the driver was under the influence. Which is probably true, considering they don’t even know who was behind the wheel.

Anyone with information is urged to call Officer Adan Martinez of the Escondido Police Department at 760/839-4465.

This is at least the 68th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year; remarkably, it appears to be just the third in San Diego County.

It’s also the 23rd fatal hit-and-run I’m aware of involving a bike rider since the first of this year.

Update: The victim has been identified as 36-year old Vista resident Kevin Lentz; the former mountain bike racer leaves behind his wife and one-year old son.

The driver reportedly was traveling at a high rate of speed on the wrong side of the road, after rounding a blind curve.

A crowdfunding page has raised nearly $52,000 in just one day.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Kevin Lentz and his family and loved ones.

Thanks to Phillip Young for the heads-up.

60-year old man killed riding bike in early morning West Adams crash; driver booked on DUI

Once again, someone got behind the wheel after having too much to drink.

And once again, an innocent person paid the price.

According to KCBS-2/KCAL-9, the victim was riding his bike west on West Adams Blvd near South Redondo Blvd in LA’s West Adams neighborhood around 3 am this morning when he was run down from behind.

KTLA-5 places the location of the crash one block west on West Adams near South Cloverdale Ave.

After hitting him, the 20-something driver continued on to smash into a parked car.

The victim, described only as a 60-year old man, died at the scene. Police note that he was not homeless, despite the early morning hour.

They also say the area is well-lighted and not considered dangerous for people on bicycles, and that the victim had lights on his bike; video from the scene clearly shows front and rear blinking lights.

Which means there was no excuse for taking the life of an innocent human being.

As if there ever is.

This is at least the 67th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 30th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; half of those deaths have occurred in the City of Los Angeles.

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

Thanks to John Damman for the heads-up.

Man killed riding bike on Manchester Blvd in Inglewood in possible right hook crash

For the third time in less than two years, someone on a bike has been killed on deadly Manchester Blvd.

This time in Inglewood.

According to KFI Radio, the victim was somehow struck by the driver of a stakebed truck turning right onto eastbound Manchester Blvd from northbound Hindry Ave near LAX around 7:30 yesterday morning.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

It’s unclear which street the victim, described only as a Hispanic male, was riding on.

Based on the limited description, this could have been a right hook collision if the victim was riding on Hindry, or he may have been hit as he was riding in front of the truck on Manchester or just after the driver’s turn.

It’s also possible the driver ignored the No Right On Red sign on Hindry.

The driver remained at the scene. Police have not yet determined if he or she was under the influence.

Anyone with information is urged to call Inglewood Traffic Investigator Ryan Green at 310/412-5134.

This is at least the 66th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 29th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County.

His death follows the deaths of an unidentified man on Manchester at South Gramercy Place in February, and Frederick “Woon” Frazier at Manchester and Normandie in April of last year.

Which suggests a serious problem on the entire corridor, whether in Inglewood or Los Angeles, where Manchester is on the city’s High Injury Network.

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

 

Hit-and-run victim Virgilio Lemus Garcia died last month, 3 days after Santa Ana crash; 22nd fatal SoCal bike hit-and-run

Unfortunately, the press seldom follows up once the ambulance doors close. And it may take weeks before we find out what happened afterwards.

If ever.

That’s what happened with 60-year old Santa Ana resident Virgilio Lemus Garcia, after he was left lying in the street by a hit-and-run driver early in the morning on Sunday, October 13th.

According to KNBC-4, Santa Ana police responded to reports of a man with a bicycle lying in the street at 5:20 am, at the intersection of Main Street and Warner Avenue in Santa Ana.

According to a witness, Garcia was riding his bike on Warner Ave when he was run down by the driver of a blue Honda, who only stopped briefly before hitting the gas.

Other reports indicate Garcia was headed north on Main when he was struck by a driver going west on Warner.

He was hospitalized in grave condition with severe bleeding his brain and throughout his body.

Sadly, Garcia’s niece reported on Facebook the following Wednesday that he had passed away, and was buried last week.

Video from the scene shows his mangled mountain bike near the curb, and the same black cowboy hat he wore in photos lying in the street.

Police are looking for a mid-1990s dark blue Honda Civic sedan with likely front-end damage, including broken head lights and a possible shattered windshield.

They say alcohol may have played a role in the crash, but didn’t explain how.

Garcia death came a little more than two weeks before last week’s fatal Santa Ana hit-and-run, and roughly five and a half miles away.

Anyone with information is urged to call Santa Ana Police at 714/245-8208 or 714/245-8700.

This is at least the 65th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 11th that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Twenty-two of those deaths have been the result of hit-and-runs, including ten of the 21 bike riders killed since September 3rd.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Virgilio Lemus Garcia and all his loved ones.

Thanks to Bill Sellin for the heads-up, and his help in tracking down this story.

Santa Ana man killed by hit-and-run driver — ninth fatal SoCal bike hit-and-run in past two months

Enough!

Southern California bike riders are being left to die in the streets by heartless, murderous drivers at an ever increasing rate.

Nearly half of the twenty people who’ve died riding bicycles in the past two months have been killed by cowardly hit-and-run drivers, who refused to stop and render aid as required by law.

Or had the basic human decency to call for help, rather than leave another person suffering alone in the last moments of their life.

The latest hit-and-run victim lost his life early this morning in Santa Ana.

According to multiple sources, a man was found lying in the street next to a heavily damaged bicycle on the 300 block of Newhope Street near the Iglesia De La Comunidad chapel around three this morning.

KTLA-5 reports the victim, identified only as a 52-year old man, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The street has buffered bike lanes in both directions, though it’s not clear if the victim was riding in them. Police say alcohol played a factor, suggesting they believe he victim was under the influence, since the driver remains unknown.

There’s no description of the suspect vehicle, except that should have front-end damage.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Santa Ana Police Department at 714/245-8208 or 714/245-8200.

This is at least the 64 bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the tenth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Twenty-one of those deaths have been the result of hit-and-runs, including nine of the 20 bike riders killed since September 3rd.

Update: The Orange County Coroner has identified the victim as 52-year old Santa Ana resident Daniel Martinez. 

Thanks to Bill Sellin for the heads-up.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Daniel Martinez and his loved ones.

 

75-year old Oxnard man dies a week after crash with pickup driver; fifth Oxnard bicycling death this year

Yet another bike rider has died in Oxnard, in what has turned out to be a very bad year for the town of just 210,000.

According to the Ventura County Star, 75-year old Oxnard resident George Dominguez died Thursday afternoon, six days after he a struck by a driver while riding his bike.

Oxnard police investigators say Dominguez was turning left off northbound C Street into an alley near Roderick Avenue around 1 pm Friday, October 25th, when he was struck by the driver of a pickup headed south on C.

He was reportedly coherent and alert despite a visible head injury.

It’s not clear why Dominguez apparently rode in front of the truck, or who had the right of way.

The driver stayed at the scene, and wasn’t suspected of being under the influence. Police also say speed does appear to have been a factor.

Of course, speed is always a factor, even if driver was traveling at or under the 30 mph speed limit; slower speeds are less likely to result in a fatality in the event of a collision, and makes it easier to avoid.

This is at least the 63rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Ventura County; all but one of those have been in Oxnard.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for George Dominguez and his family.

 

Update: Woman riding bike killed in Hollywood hit-and-run; third fatal LA bicycling hit-and-run in past week

Unbelievable.

For the fourth time in just the past week, a Southern California bike rider has been run down and left to die by a hit-and-run driver.

Three of those in Los Angeles.

Early this morning, a 49-year old woman riding her bike in Hollywood became just the latest victim of those heartless cowards behind the wheels.

According to KTLA-5, the victim was riding north on Orange Drive above Hollywood Blvd around 2:25 am Friday when she run down by a northbound driver, who continued without stopping.

She died at the scene.

Unfortunately, no other information is available at this time.

But this time, it happened in my own neighborhood.

Orange Drive is just around the corner from Madame Tussauds and the Chinese Theater. The street has a dog-leg to the left at Hollywood Blvd, and connects with westbound Hollywood at a narrow 90° angle, both of which serve to slow traffic.

However, drivers can be heard racing through the streets of Hollywood all night, and frequently make the left turn off eastbound Hollywood Blvd without slowing.

Anyone with information was urged to call the LAPD at 213/527-3247. As always, there is a standing $50,000 reward for any fatal hit-and-run in the City of LA.

This is at least the 63rd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 28th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also 14th bicyclist killed in the City of Los Angeles this year.

Update: The Beverly Press has identified the victim as a homeless woman, whose name is being withheld until they can notify her family. 

Police say she was run down from behind, and was doing nothing wrong before  she was cruelly left to die in the street. 

Police are looking for a four-door, silver sedan with likely front end damage, of undetermined make and model. 

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

 

Breaking News: Koreatown crash kills 23-year old man; Armando Felipe Ignacio died two days after hit-and-run collision

Too often, collisions that take the life of an innocent person never make the news.

Particularly if the victim passes away days later.

Sadly, that’s what happened with Armando Felipe Ignacio, who died in the hospital two days after he was struck by a hit-and-run driver.

According to a crowdfunding page, he was riding his bike in front of 2830 W Eight Street in Koreatown around 10:30 pm this past Sunday when he suffered a major head injury in the crash.

After being rushed into surgery Sunday night, Ignacio suffered a pair of heart attacks Tuesday morning; the second one was fatal. He died without ever waking up.

He was just 23.

The crowdfunding page says the investigation is ongoing, which means there is now an automatic $50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the heartless coward who left him there to die.

At this time, the fund to pay his funeral expenses has raised nearly $2,600 of the $11,000 goal, in less than 24 hours.

This is at least the 62nd bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 27th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; Ignacio is also 13th bicyclist killed in the City of Los Angeles this year.

My deepest sympathy and prayers Armando Felipe Ignacio and his loved ones.

Thanks to Jane Voodikon for the heads-up.

 

Bike rider killed in Palm Springs hit-and-run; victim identified as 30-year old Desert Hot Springs man

It took awhile, but we finally got confirmation that the victim in Monday’s Palm Springs hit-and-run was riding a bicycle at the time.

The victim, identified by his family as 30-year old Palm Desert resident Raymundo Jaime, was riding on South Palm Canyon Drive between Mesquite Avenue and Morongo Road around 9:30 pm Monday when he was struck by a driver, who continued without stopping.

He died at the scene.

Police are looking for a dark-colored compact with likely front-end damage; the driver fled south on Palm Canyon. There’s no description on the driver or make of car.

Jaime’s family called on the driver to turn themself in.

Someone’s sitting at home knowing that they hit someone, they hit a person, and they know that they killed him. They know that; there’s no way on God’s green earth can they not know,” said Jeanette Jaime, Raymundo’s aunt and godmother. “I can understand the fear in them, but it just sickens me that someone can just do this to another person, to a human being.

 

He leaves behind his wife and a four-year old daughter.

“She is going to grow up without a father,” Jaime said. “It means that she will cry herself to sleep. They had a very awesome relationship.”

A crowdfunding page set up to benefit them has raised just $225 of the $10,000 goal in two days.

Anyone with information is urged to call the Palm Springs Police Department at 760/323-8116.

This is at least the 61st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 8th that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers Raymundo Jaime and his family and loved ones.

Thanks to Victor Bale for the heads-up.

 

Update: Bike rider killed in North Hills hit-and-run; victim struck by two drivers, second fled on foot

News is just breaking that a bike rider was killed in LA’s North Hills neighborhood Friday night.

According to KABC-7, the victim was struck by two cars around 8:30 pm at Rayen Street and Woodley Ave in North Hills; the first driver stayed at the scene, while the second reportedly abandoned his car and ran away.

The victim died after being taken to a local hospital.

In a story that hasn’t been posted online yet, KNBC-4 reports the victim was knocked off his or her bike by the first driver before getting hit by the second, who fled on foot.

Judging by the bike lanes visible in the video, the crash appears to have occurred on Woodley Ave just south of Rayen. Video from the scene shows the victim’s mangled bicycle resting on the center yellow line, with the abandoned car blocking both southbound lanes.

No other details or description of the victim are available at this time.

This is at least the 60th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the 26th that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also 12th bicyclist killed in the City of Los Angeles this year.

Update: The LA Daily News describes the victim as a 56-year old man.

According to the paper, the victim was attempting to turn left onto southbound Woodley against the light when he was struck by a southbound 21-year old driver in a Lexus.

That was confirmed by a witness who left a comment below.

The Lexus driver was attempting to make a U-turn to get back to the victim when the bike rider was run over by the second driver, who fled the scene in his or her car — not on foot as originally reported. Again, that’s confirmed by the commenter below.

The suspect vehicle is described only as a black sedan.

A ghost bike will be placed at the scene Monday night. 

Anyone with information is urged to call the LAPD Valley Traffic Division at 818/644-8000.

Update 2: The LA County Medical Examiner has identified the victim as 56-year old Joel Fisher. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Joel Fisher and his loved ones.

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