• Bicyclist Struck and Seriously Injured On Route 40

    by  • July 20, 2010 • Injuries and Fatalities • 3 Comments

    From the Wilmington News Journal:

    Bicyclist in ‘very serious condition’ after Bear crash

    A 28-year-old New Castle man is in “very serious condition” following a bicycle accident on U.S. 40 in Bear this afternoon, state police say.

    The accident happened about 2 p.m. near the entrance to the Governors Square shopping center when Shaun Bowyer was riding his bike east in the right westbound lane while attempting to cross the highway. Cpl. Jeffrey Hale said Bowyer’s bike was struck by a Ford Ranger pickup being driven by Horace Springer, 73, of Bear.

    Bowyer is being treated at Christiana Hospital for head trauma and a broken leg. Hale said police are still investigating the crash.

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    The comments contain the usual battery of cowardly, insensitive rants blaming the victim. However several witnesses posted thoughts and gave some perspective as to what happened. One stated that the cyclist was not going the wrong way but merely trying to get across the intersection, another stated that the driver had the green. Most stated that the driver was visibly upset and that witnesses reacted quickly to render aid. One person claiming to be the sister of the victim posted to the site, but apparently her comments were removed.

    Panning around the scene using Google Street View reveals a ginormous intersection, regardless of the circumstances surrounding the crash, Governor’s Square and most Route 40 intersections were designed move the maximum number of motor vehicles with no provisions (and dozens of conflict points) for bicyclists and pedestrians. There is no margin for error here, and we need to re-imagine road design that allows all road users to travel safely and comfortably.

    Our thoughts and prayers are with Shaun Bowyer and we wish him a full and speedy recovery.


    3 Responses to Bicyclist Struck and Seriously Injured On Route 40

    1. staff
      July 20, 2010 at 3:40 pm

      The problem is indeed "no margin for error", which is true for bicyclists on almost all high speed roads and, especially, intersections in Delaware.

      There will always be human error, of course, which is why engineers in other areas think in terms of fail-safe design. But this type of engineering thinking is conspicuously absent when it comes to bicyclists on roads.

    2. Frank Warnock
      July 20, 2010 at 4:06 pm

      It's painfully obvious gas was about .93/gal when this area was built. It will be very difficult, if not impossible to implement Complete Streets in an area like this.

      Pedestrians can be seen in the interactive Google Earth view. The area does have a fair amount of non-motorized activity.

      A good start would be putting the Rt.40 parallel side paths (MUPs) on a faster track to completion. Also needed are state of the art bike/ped crossings and signal lighting – and calming – at each intersection.

    3. brandywinewcheer
      July 21, 2010 at 1:30 pm

      I was driving by when I just saw the guy flip over. The light was definitely green, I don't see how it happened. The man pulled right over and people rushed out their cars to help him. I can't stop thinking about what I saw. Thank god he is okay.

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