Tandem Cycling - Tandem cyclists killed near Banff
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07-15-03, 06:03 PM
Does anyone have more information about the tandem riders who were killed near Banff, Alberta on July 15?
They were apparently hit by a semi. The driver said, "I didn't see them."
I have heard no names or further details.
07-15-03, 06:39 PM
Here are links to two different stories:
The couple were in the early 50's and were from Washington State (USA).
07-15-03, 07:49 PM
Tuesday, July 15, 2003
Crash kills 2 cyclists
Two-seater struck by semi-trailer
By DAVE HUSDAL AND ADAM GORING, THE BANFF CRAG & CANYON
LAKE LOUISE -- Two cyclists are dead following the latest in a string of fatal traffic crashes on the Trans-Canada Highway near Lake Louise.
The two were killed yesterday around 10 a.m. when the two-seater touring bike they were pedalling was struck by a westbound semi about two km west of the Lake Louise overpass.
The ages and names of the victims, a man and a woman believed to be from the U.S., were not released by RCMP.
The victims were struck as they rode west on the north shoulder of the undivided road in a 70 km/h (43 mph)speed zone. There, westbound traffic must merge from two lanes to one as the road curves to the right on the heavily travelled route.
The highway was bare and dry at the time of the accident.
Const. France Levesque said the truck driver indicated he braked quickly for a car before colliding with the bike.
The paved portion of the shoulder of the road is less than five feet wide where the collision occurred -- a soft gravel shoulder extends beyond that.
The truck entered the ditch but came to rest back on the road a few hundred metres west of where the cyclists were struck.
A trail of debris, including pieces of the mangled bike and belongings of the victims, was visible in the ditch.
Traffic slowed to a crawl as drivers passed the scene.
Lake Louise firefighters used cat litter to absorb a small diesel fuel spill and helped in the recovery of the bodies.
The distraught-looking driver of the truck did not appear to be physically hurt as he stood outside his rig.
The truck is owned by Valmar Express Lines Inc. of Calgary.
Martin Wandinger, manager of the company, was awaiting more information on the crash yesterday.
"It's just a pretty nasty situation," Wandinger said.
"It's a tragedy... total misfortune."
Crashes on the undivided Trans-Canada from Castle Junction, where it intersects with Hwy. 93, past Lake Louise to the B.C. border, claimed 22 lives from 1998 to 2002, with eight people dying in 2001 and another eight in 2002, according to RCMP stats.
Yesterday's fatalities were the first of 2003 on the deadly stretch of road.
Lobbying for twinning of the highway has been ongoing, with advocates including Wildrose MP Myron Thompson, the Lake Louise Community Council and the Association for Mountain Parks Protection and Enjoyment.
The federal government has said it needs help from the province for major improvements to the road, while the provincial government has called for more federal funding to twin the deadly highway.
07-16-03, 05:32 PM
Rural Mounties have charged a Calgary trucker after a married couple from Washington State was killed while riding a bicycle on the Trans-Canada Hwy.
The pair -- a 55-year-old man and his 53-year-old wife -- were on a tandem bike on the north shoulder of the undivided road in a 70 km/h speed zone of Hwy. 1 when the semi-trailer collided with them from behind just after 10 a.m.
At the request of the couple's family, RCMP would not release their names.
Police said the couple was vacationing in Alberta when they were struck and killed.
"The couple was in the shoulder on a curve on the road and so was the truck driver when (they collided)," said Lake Louise RCMP Cpl. Scott Stephen.
The trucker -- whose name has not been released -- was charged with careless driving and failing to drive in the centre of the traffic lane, he said.
07-16-03, 05:51 PM
"They collided"? That's a pretty goofy statement. Should be more like "the truck smeared them into oblivion".
What a tragedy - and again the media barely touches the bikers side of the story...
John Stoltenberg & Kathy Husband, Seattle, WA.
07-17-03, 02:22 PM
Only proofs the fact again, that we can never be sure what the day will bring.
Cycling is taking chances and a compromise between risk and accomplishing the goals.
Hope we all will be able to avoid similar tragedies.
Be as safe as possible.
I'd like to pay respect to the souls of this people and express my condolence to their relatives and friends.
07-20-03, 04:14 PM
Sometimes when my wife and I head out for a short ride on our tandem, and leave our kids at home, I think of a story such as this with our names in it. I know that sounds gruesome but I work in the news media and have covered and photographed many such sad events so I know they happen every day. I don't know the answer. Sometimes the feeling is so strong I will not suggest a ride and let the day pass. I really feel for these folks, I hope it was quick and painless. And that those left behind will be alright.
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