Tragically, last week’s epidemic of bike fatalities and serious injury crashes in the Chicago region, has continued into this week. This morning a young woman was fatally struck by a flatbed truck driver in Roscoe Village. She was the sixth person to be struck and killed by a commercial vehicle driver while biking in Chicago and Evanston since June, and the third to be run over by a right-turning flatbed truck driver.
And early Sunday morning, well-liked Garfield Ridge pizzeria worker Nick Fox passed away from injuries sustained from a bike/train crash in June. That means that six people have died from bike crashes in 2016.
According to police, at around 7:50 a.m. today the female cyclist, believed to be in her 30s, was biking north on Damen Avenue south of Addison Street. According to the city’s bike map, this stretch of Damen has “shared-lane markings” – bike-and-chevrons symbols designed to remind motorists to watch out for cyclists.
Police said that the driver of the northbound flatbed truck, carrying construction supplies, made a right turn, heading eastbound onto Addison, and ran over the woman. Witnesses said the woman was killed instantly.
According to an ABC news report, witness Carole Cifone said the truck driver immediately jumped out of the vehicle and tried to aid the woman. “The driver was so distraught, they took him away in an ambulance,” Cifone said. “He was just bent out of shape by what had happened [and the fact] that he was responsible.”
Officer Nicole Trainor from Police News Affairs said an investigation of the crash is ongoing and the driver has not yet been cited. According to the Cook County medical investigator’s office, the victim’s name and age had not been released as of early this afternoon.
As of 9:30 this morning, police had closed off two blocks of Addison east of Damen, and the victim’s body still lay in the street covered with sheets. The bike was not visible, but photos from other news reports show a badly damaged road bike.
“Any vehicle needs to constantly be aware of cyclists on the road,” a bike rider named Meg told ABC. “This is a [road with shared-lane markings]. There’s no excuse.”
DNAinfo reported that about ten people were waiting for the #152 Addison bus at the intersection when the crash occurred, and they stayed on the scene to provide testimony to investigators.