Po­lice in­ves­ti­gat­ing af­ter pickup truck plows into pack of bi­cy­cle rid­ers on free­way

Edmonton Sun - - FRONT PAGE - Jamie Sarkonak and STEPHEN cook

A morn­ing group ride to Beau­mont ended with five cy­clists in the hos­pi­tal af­ter they were struck from be­hind by a pickup truck.

The cy­clists, travelling in a group of 15, were taken to hos­pi­tal Satur­day morn­ing fol­low­ing a col­li­sion on the Sher­wood Park Free­way on the east­ern edge of Ed­mon­ton.

Moun­ties said a truck col­lided with as many as 10 bikes just be­fore High­way 216 at 17 Street around 10 a.m.

In­juries ranged from bro­ken bones to road rash, said RCMP Cpl. James Stanviloff Satur­day. Two cy­clists sus­tained se­ri­ous in­juries, one of which was a pos­si­ble spine in­jury. Three oth­ers had non-life threat­en­ing in­juries.

The cy­clists were in the cen­tre lane, travelling twoby-two, as the ve­hi­cle hit them from be­hind. They were be­lieved to be rid­ing to Beau­mont in con­nec­tion with Cy­cle-logic, an Ed­mon­ton bike shop.

“Even for the peo­ple who weren’t in­jured that were present, it’s had a big im­pact as well,” Stanviloff said.

Po­lice are still in­ves­ti­gat­ing where the cy­clists should have been on the road, but Stanviloff be­lieved they should have been rid­ing sin­gle-file and on the shoul­der in ac­cor­dance with traf­fic laws.

He added that cy­clists still have the right of way on the road and the truck driver should have been able to see the pack ahead.

“It was a clear day with good vis­i­bil­ity, so this is some­thing we wouldn’t have ex­pected,” he said.

Po­lice are look­ing into dis­tracted driv­ing as a pos­si­ble charge, but none have been laid yet.

Al­co­hol has been ruled out as a fac­tor, but tex­ting re­mains a pos­si­bil­ity.

RCMP said the fe­male driver of the truck was co-op­er­a­tive and up­set. She re­mained at the scene.

Over the phone, a Cy­cle­l­ogic staff mem­ber said the store is wait­ing for po­lice re­ports and has no com­ment.

On Face­book, the shop said mem­bers of a group ride were in­volved in a col­li­sion.

“We have one in crit­i­cal con­di­tion and four in se­ri­ous,” read the post. “Your sup­port is ap­pre­ci­ated.”

The road was closed fol­low­ing the ac­ci­dent but has since been re-opened.

STEPHEN cook/post­media

Emer­gency crews are seen at the 17 Street ramp at the Sher­wood Park Free­way Satur­day af­ter a pickup truck struck a pack of cy­clists.

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