Tag Archive for bicycling fatality

70-year old woman killed in Irvine crash; 7th Orange County bike death this year

Orange County, we have a problem.

Just five months into the year, the county has already seen seven people killed riding their bikes.

The latest came this morning, when a 70-year old woman lost her life at the hands of motorist, who was barely mentioned in news reports.

According to the Orange County Register, the victim, who has not been publicly identified, was struck somewhere near the near the intersection of Portola Parkway and the 261 toll road around 9:59 am.

She was pronounced dead on at the scene.

There’s no word on how the crash occurred, or whether it happened on Portola or the 261.

The driver remained at the scene; police don’t suspect he or she was under the influence.

Victor Bale forwards word that the intersection is near the entrance to the Peters Canyon Trail.

According to Bale,

It’s a pleasant and popular trail in Orange County that can be used to head to Laguna Beach and Dana Point or further south to San Clemente or Oceanside. It also is used to lead to trails that go to Newport Beach’s back bay.

He added,

I’ve been at that intersection probably hundreds of times, typically riding on Portola over the 261 to reach the trail on the other side.

Unfortunately the story doesn’t tell us if she was exiting the trail onto Portola (can be sketchy and you need to be very careful) or if she was trying to reach the trail via Portola as I usually do.

Hopefully we’ll learn more after the holiday.

Anyone with information is urged to call Motor Officer Mike Bergstrom at 949/724-7212, ext. 2046.

This is at least the 21st bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Orange County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 70-year old Irvine resident Linda Smythe

Still no word on how the crash occurred; however, Orange County bike advocate Bill Sellin reports she was thrown 105 feet by the force of the impact, which suggests she was struck at a high rate of speed. 

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Linda Smythe and her loved ones.

Thanks to Victor Bale and Bill Sellin for the information. 

52-year old man killed by alleged drunk driver in San Diego’s Alta Vista neighborhood

Note: No Morning Links today, following an extended internet outage last night.

As usual, we’ll be back next week to catch up on anything we missed. 

………

Once again, a SoCal bike rider has lost his life, despite the lighter traffic caused by the coronavirus crisis.

But sadly, light traffic does nothing to stop an intoxicated driver.

According to multiple sources, the victim was riding on west on Paradise Valley Road west of Munda Road in San Diego’s Alta Vista neighborhood, when he was rear-ended by an alleged drunk driver shortly before 9:15 Wednesday night.

The victim, identified only as a 52-year old man, was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Twenty-eight-year old driver James L. Bumpus was arrested at the scene on suspicion of felony DUI.

There’s no word on whether the victim had lights to reflectors on his bike, or if there was anything other than Bumpus’ alleged drunken state that would have kept him from avoiding the victim’s bike.

A street view shows a four lane boulevard with no shoulder, where drivers could easily exceed the 40 mph speed limit.

This is at least the 20th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fourth that I’m aware of in San Diego County.

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

Alleged drunk, speeding driver kills unidentified Redlands bike rider

Even in the midst of a pandemic, people continue to die on our streets, simply because they’re riding a bicycle.

The latest victim is a man in Redlands, who lost his life at the hands of an accused drunk and speeding driver.

According to the Redlands Daily Facts, the victim was riding his bike at Tennessee Street and San Bernardino Ave around 8 pm Thursday when he was run down by 34-year old Mentone resident Ricardo Angel Aguilar.

The victim was transported to Loma Linda University Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, despite the efforts of an off-duty nurse who treated him at the scene.

At last report, investigators were still trying to identify him. However, they suspect he may have been a transient.

There’s no word on how the crash actually occurred, or if the victim had lights on his bike in the deepening darkness.

San Bernardino is a four lane roadway that narrows to two lanes with a 45 mph speed limit at Tennessee, while Tennessee is a two lane road with no posted speed limit; both have narrow painted shoulders.

Aguilar is being held on a quarter-million dollars bail on charges of suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and driving under the influence.

This is at least the 19th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the third that I’m aware of in San Bernardino County.

It’s also the third fatal bike crash in Redlands in little more than a year.

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

Man killed crossing PCH on bike in Wilmington crash Tuesday morning

Deadly PCH has claimed yet another victim.

According to the Daily Breeze, a man was crossing PCH in Wilmington around 5:25 Tuesday morning when he was struck by a pair of drivers.

The victim, who has not been publicly identified, was riding on Eubank Avenue at PCH when he was hit by one driver, then hit again by a second driver and knocked off his bike.

Both drivers remained at the scene.

Police report that he was apparently crossing against the light. However, there’s no word on whether there were any independent witnesses who weren’t involved in the crash at that early hour.

It’s also possible that the light may have changed as the victim was crossing the massive seven lane highway, bordered by a two lane service road.

This is at least the 18th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the fourth that I’m aware of in Los Angeles County; it’s also just the second in the City of Los Angeles since the first of the year.

Update: My News LA reports the victim was crossing PCH headed north on Eubank Ave when he was struck by an eastbound driver, then hit again by someone traveling west on PC.

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

Thanks to Mike Bike for the heads-up.

Update: 49-year old bike rider killed in early morning Oxnard crash

An Oxnard man was killed while riding his bike in a crash early Sunday morning.

And no one seems to know what happened.

According to multiple sources, the victim, identified only as a 49-year old Oxnard resident, was struck by a driver around 4:30 this morning on the 2400 block of Statham Blvd in Oxnard.

He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver, identified as a 43-year old man from Oxnard, was traveling north on Statham. However, police aren’t sure which direction the victim was riding.

Let alone how or why the driver struck him.

There’s no word on whether excess speed, drugs or alcohol played a role. Or whether the victim had lights and reflectors on his bike nearly two hours before sunrise.

A street view shows an unobstructed two lane road, with a 35 mph speed limit. The Ventura County Star describes it as an industrial area between Oxnard and Channel Islands Boulevards, which would likely have been dark and empty in that early morning hour.

Anyone with information is urged to call Oxnard PD Officer Michael Wood at 805/385-7750 or email micheal.wood@oxnardpd.org.

This is at least the 17th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first that I’m aware of in Ventura County.

Update: The victim has been identified as 49-year old Michael Nunziato, an Illinois resident living in Oxnard. 

Unfortunately, there’s still no explanation of how the crash occurred, or why. 

Police are looking for the driver of a second vehicle that was in the area around the time of the crash, and ask him or her to come forward with any information.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Michael Nunziato and all his loved ones.

Bike rider killed in Fullerton crash Tuesday afternoon, few details available

Once again, a bike rider has been killed in Southern California.

And once again, almost no information is available.

According to the Orange County Register, a person was killed when he or she was stuck by a driver in the 1900 block of Orangethorpe Ave in Fullerton just before 3 pm yesterday.

The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

And yes, the driver stuck around and cooperated with police.

Unfortunately, there’s no information available on the victim, or how the crash may have occurred. Or anything else that might explain what happened.

A street view shows a major six lane roadway, with a narrow painted bike lane on each side; without traffic, there’s little or nothing to slow drivers down.

Anyone with information is urged to call Fullerton Police Department Collision Investigator Chad Keen at 714/738-6812.

This is at least the 16th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the seventh that I’m aware of in Orange County, in what is turning out to be a very bloody year in the county.

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

Thank you to the person who forwarded this to me.

Update: Victim was actually on a motorcycle — 30-year old Brady Alexandru killed in solo Corona bike crash

Update: According to the Corona Police Department, the initial report was incorrect, and the victim was riding a motorcycle, not a bicycle. 

Which does not make it any less of a tragedy. 

This returns the number of SoCal bicycling fatalities to 15, and just one in Riverside County.

……….

It doesn’t always take a car to take a life.

Sometimes a simple curb is enough.

That appears to be the case in Corona, where police report a man was killed falling off his bike Sunday evening.

According to My News LA, the victim, identified as 30-year old Corona resident Brady Alexandru, somehow struck a curb near the intersection of Via Pacifica and Willowspring Lane.

He fell off his bike, striking his head, and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Unfortunately, no explanation was given for what street Alexandru on or which direction he was riding, or why he may have hit the curb.

A street view shows a three-way intersection, with two through lanes and a bike lane in each direction on Via Pacifica, and an un-laned residential street on Willowspring, controlled with a stop sign.

There appears to be a hill on Via Pacifica, which could have contributed to the crash if Alexandru gained speed on the downhill before coming in contact with the curb. And there’s a speed bump on Willowspring that could have caused him to lose control if he was traveling in that direction.

It’s also possible that a driver may have played an unknown role in the crash, if Alexandru hit the curb after he was forced to avoid a vehicle.

Unfortunately, we will probably never know.

There’s also no word on whether he was wearing a helmet, which might have made a difference in this case.

Solo falls like this are exactly what bike helmets are designed for, though it’s possible the force of the impact could have still exceeded a bike helmet’s relatively low design limits, depending on how fast Alexandru was going.

Police haven’t ruled anything out, including the possibility that drugs or alcohol may have contributed to the crash in some way — which is a very odd thing to say in a solo crash like this, unless they have some reason to suspect it.

Anyone with information is urged to call Corona Police Department Officer Jason Gardner at 951/817-5784.

This is at least the 16th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the second that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for Brady Alexandru and all his loved ones.

Note: Because of the late-breaking story, there will be no Morning Links today; as usual, we’ll be back with anything we missed on Wednesday. 

62-year old William Camp killed riding his bike in Palm Springs big rig collision

Even with far fewer drivers out there, Southern California streets are still dangerous.

Tragically, that point was driven home once again in Palm Springs yesterday.

According to the Desert Sun, 62-year old Palm Springs resident William Camp was riding his bike on Gene Autry Trail near Via Escuela, when he was struck by the driver of a big rig truck at 4:05 pm.

Camp reportedly died at the scene, within minutes of the crash.

The driver stayed after the wreck and cooperated with the police, who say he did not appear to be under the influence.

Unfortunately, there’s no word on how the crash happened.

Photos from the scene show large screens blocking the view behind the stopped truck, just feet from the intersection with Via Escuela.

That could suggest Camp was the victim of a right hook, but there are several other possible alternatives.

This is at least the 15th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the first that I’m aware of in Riverside County.

My deepest sympathy and prayers for William Camp and all his loved ones.

Man killed in Huntington Beach bike collision; fourth Huntington Beach bicycling death in last four months

Once again, someone has been killed riding a bike in Huntington Beach.

And unfortunately, there’s almost no information available.

According to the Orange County Register, the crash happened near Yorktown Avenue and Vasile Circle about 8 pm Wednesday.

Police responding to the call found the victim, identified only as a man, lying unresponsive in the street; he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The 46-year old driver remained at the scene and cooperated with the investigation.

As usual, the driver was uninjured.

A street view shows Yorktown is a four lane street with a center turn lane and bike lanes on either side, with a 40 mph speed limit — low by Orange County standards.

Anyone with information is urged to call Huntington Beach Accident Investigators A. Turner, 714/536-5670 or D. Kim, 714/536-5666.

This is at least the 14th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the sixth that I’m aware of in Orange County.

It’s also the third fatal collision involving a bike rider in Huntington Beach this year, and the fourth in less than four months.

Which means half of those deaths this year have been on the unforgiving streets of just one very deadly town.

And if that doesn’t scream there’s a major problem that needs to be addressed, I don’t know what the hell would.

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

61-year old man killed after allegedly turning his bike in front of San Bernardino police officer

Even cops will tell you they’re often among the worst drivers on the streets.

Yet somehow, they never seem to be at fault when something goes wrong.

That was the case in San Bernardino on Thursday, when a man was killed in a collision with a police officer.

According to the San Bernardino Sun, the victim, identified only as a 61-year old San Bernardino resident, was riding west on Baseline Street east of Valencia Avenue during a rain storm when he allegedly turned left across the five lane street in front of oncoming traffic, and was struck by the patrol car.

He died at the scene.

The Herald News places the time of the crash as 4:55 pm.

The San Bernardino Police Department insists the officer was driving at normal speed, even though he or she was responding to a call at the time of the crash; no mention of whether the emergency lights and siren were being used.

And despite what the Sun’s headline suggests, the victim did not crash into the officer’s car. It hit him.

It’s entirely possible that the crash occurred exactly as the police described it. The rain could have obscured the victim’s vision, and he might have turned in front of the car as a result.

Or it’s possible that the rain obscured the officer’s view, and he or she didn’t see the victim making his turn until it was too late.

It also seems unlikely that the cop was just puttering along at normal speed while responding to a call, though again, it’s possible.

Unless there were independent witnesses to the crash, we’ll only have the officer’s perspective to go on, because the victim can’t tell his side of the story.

Anyone with information is urged to call Detective Dan Acosta or Sgt. Jeff Harvey at 909/384-5792.

This is at least the 13th bicycling fatality in Southern California this year, and the second that I’m aware of in San Bernardino County.

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

 

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