A man was killed in a bicycle accident that was reportedly caused by distracted driving. Oregon law enforcement has arrested a man who was thought to have been looking at his phone when he struck a cyclist who was traveling on the shoulder of the road. After he struck the cyclist, he fled the scene of the bicycle accident.
The cyclist was a 74-year-old man who was traveling along Highway 30. After the pickup truck driver struck him, the man was thrown down an embankment. Emergency medical responders declared the victim dead at the scene. It is believed that the driver was texting when he caused the bicycle accident.
Although the driver fled the scene of the incident, an Oregon State Police trooper apprehended him shortly after the accident. The driver is currently facing charges for first-degree manslaughter and a hit-and-run, which is a felony charge. This tragic incident underscores the danger of texting and driving, as well as the safety risks to cyclists when riding near a road. Bicycles have certain rights, including the right to ride along the shoulder of a highway. Motor vehicle drivers have the responsibility to drive safely near cyclists and other vehicles with whom they share the road.
If the family of the deceased wishes to consider a wrongful death suit against the driver, they must present sufficient evidence to prove that the driver was negligent in a manner that caused the bicycle accident and death that resulted. A civil suit is separate from any criminal charges he is facing, but conviction of any of the current charges could help establish liability in a related wrongful death case. Any compensation granted would be to cover the cost of any financial and emotional duress.
Source: kptv.com, "Fatal bicycle-involved crash near Rainier, victim identified", , Aug. 31, 2014