In Arizona, drivers are required to leave a minimum safe passing distance of three feet between their vehicle and a cyclist when passing. This law has been on the books since 2000—in other words, drivers have had ten years to familiarize themselves with the law, and adjust their behavior accordingly.
On Wednesday afternoon, February 24, a garbage truck driver in Scottsdale, Arizona hit a 53-year old cyclist with the right front of his truck as she was riding on the “far right side of the road” and he was attempting to pass her.
The cyclist, who suffered “life-threatening injuries including a possible broken back, pelvis, and internal bleeding,” was airlifted to Scottsdale Osborn Hospital.
According to Scottsdale television station ABC 15, “Police said alcohol and speed are not factors in the accident at this time.”
The station reports that “citations are pending and the investigation is ongoing.”
Another case of “I didn’t see her”?
Just another driver who is unacquainted with either common sense or the rules governing the safe operation of his vehicle?
The predictable result of a near-total lack of enforcement?
Whichever is the case, the cyclist will be in our thoughts as she fights for her life. We hope she will be in yours as well.