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Newton MA, man on bike killed by UPS truck

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Newton MA, man on bike killed by UPS truck

Old 08-29-23, 08:31 AM
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Newton MA, man on bike killed by UPS truck

just heard about this

a 57-year-old man on a bicycle died after he was hit by a UPS truck ... as the bicyclist was taken to a Boston hospital, where he died.

https://www.nbcboston.com/news/local...ewton/3123111/

not much info yet about the circumstances. I used to bike commute to West Newton but I'm not familiar with the intersection of Watertown Street (Rte 16) and Bridge Street, in Newton MA. The intersection is in the heart of Newton's Nonantum neighborhood and Coletti-Magni Park is on one of the corners of that intersection.

In their statement later Monday night, officials said a preliminary investigation suggested the UPS truck was headed east on Watertown Street (Rte 16) and turning onto Bridge Street at the time of the crash. The bicyclist, officials said, was headed west on Watertown Street (Rte 16).
https://whdh.com/news/bicyclist-kill...ash-in-newton/

5:30pm, so it was still light out





https://goo.gl/maps/aa2WBVpVMAsoxQcu6

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Old 08-29-23, 12:25 PM
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This was one of my closest friends in grad school.
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Old 08-29-23, 01:02 PM
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Polaris OBark oh man, so sorry to hear that
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Old 08-29-23, 02:18 PM
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Rest in peace, my friend.

In my city (a population of about 900,000 people) in the Midwest, an average of 5 bicyclists die every year. Not bad, I reckon. The number used to be 2 or fewer, about ten years ago, and has gone up since the pandemic. Wonder how many bicyclists die annually, on an average, in the Boston area
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Old 08-29-23, 03:44 PM
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The description indicates the UPS truck made a left turn across the path of the westbound cyclist, also known as a failure to give right-of-way, or as we call it here a "left hook". A common accident, driver will state "I didn't see the cyclist", as an excuse. The Vermont police have charged a motorist for a left hook into the path of an oncoming vehicle (motorcyclist) in the death of actor Treat Williams. Police locally seem to never charge a motorist with this locally when they turn across the path of an oncoming motorcyclist, at least a few are killed each year hear on L.I. in this scenario. We will se how this plays out.
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Old 08-29-23, 04:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Eyes Roll
Rest in peace, my friend.

In my city (a population of about 900,000 people) in the Midwest, an average of 5 bicyclists die every year. Not bad, I reckon. The number used to be 2 or fewer, about ten years ago, and has gone up since the pandemic. Wonder how many bicyclists die annually, on an average, in the Boston area
ours mostly involve a truck at an intersection. but a cpl yrs ago we had the very rare 2 bikes in opposite direction meet head-on, on a paved multi-use path where 1 died. but in the Boston area, it's the trucks & busses that pose the biggest threat. probably why we have so much bike infrastructure being added. I'd have to look at the location in person to see if any sharrows or bike lane line painting, etc. exist there right now & if that would have even helped. probably, but how do you measure that?
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Old 08-29-23, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
This was one of my closest friends in grad school.
My condolences
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Old 08-29-23, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
This was one of my closest friends in grad school.
I am so very sorry.
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Old 08-29-23, 07:45 PM
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Sad. JRA and......💥

These crash accounts always make me think of which New Orleans intersection is the future location of MY ghost bike. Never considered I'd be moving out of here forever. After January Mr. Death will have to find me in SC. I'm thinking now of the fable "Appointment in Samarra".

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Old 08-30-23, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
This was one of my closest friends in grad school.
Sorry for the loss of your friend.
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Old 08-30-23, 07:25 AM
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Andrew Bohm

-mr. bill
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Old 08-30-23, 07:53 AM
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JoeyBike

prophet reference. good luck to us all

A merchant in Baghdad sends his servant to the marketplace for provisions. Soon afterwards, the servant comes home white and trembling and tells him that in the marketplace, he was jostled by a woman, whom he recognized as Death, who made a threatening gesture. Borrowing the merchant's horse, the servant flees at great speed to Samarra, a distance of about 75 miles (125 km), where he believes Death will not find him. The merchant then goes to the marketplace and finds Death, and asks why she made the threatening gesture to his servant. She replies, "That was not a threatening gesture, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I have an appointment with him tonight, in Samarra."
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Old 08-30-23, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve B.
... The Vermont police have charged a motorist for a left hook into the path of an oncoming vehicle (motorcyclist) in the death of actor Treat Williams. Police locally seem to never charge a motorist with this locally when they turn across the path of an oncoming motorcyclist, at least a few are killed each year hear on L.I. in this scenario. We will se how this plays out.
I've read and seen a lot of newsstories about trafficcollisionsinvolvingdeaths and serious injuries.

It seems to me the only way that a driverwho is responsible for a collision to get charged and convicted is if he's

1) DUI;

2) hit-and-run;

3) drivingwithout a licence or with a suspendedlicence;

4) wanted or alreadyknownby the police; or

5) the victim was in a car.

In this case of Dr. Bohm, the victim was on a bike. So as far as we know, no charges.
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Old 08-30-23, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill
Andrew Bohm

-mr. bill
Thank you for posting that. I hadn't yet seen it. They did a great job of capturing the essence of someone I remember as an outstanding scientist and possibly even better human being. He was the sort of person who was so eager to help others that he sometimes neglected his own career. (Having said that, he still did exceptionally well.) He was genuinely one of the kindest human beings I ever had the good fortune to know. I regret that we sort of lost touch with one another over the last few years.
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Old 08-30-23, 09:34 AM
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Given the rarity of fatal bike accidents, do criminal charges in these types of cases do anything to improve things?

I suppose the media attention of a trial would keep the incident in the local news a bit more and a handful of drivers might be a little more cautious for a little while. But since the ideal is no accidents at all, then there cannot be any lasting effect from this.

I know that when I’m driving, the criminal consequences of my actions don’t factor in how I drive. I’m generally always trying not to hit or be hit. But like anyone, I’m imperfect and make mistakes.

Certainly if a driver is doing something they clearly shouldn’t be like driving under the influence or texting, these are choices made that should have consequences.

But is there anything we gain by prosecuting someone who almost certainly didn’t see the cyclist? I’m not saying the cyclist wasn’t visible, but our brains have a way of not seeing things that are visible. And anyone who has driven has had those instances of being surprised by something you didn’t see, but could have seen earlier.
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Old 08-30-23, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Daniel4
I've read and seen a lot of newsstories about trafficcollisionsinvolvingdeaths and serious injuries.

It seems to me the only way that a driverwho is responsible for a collision to get charged and convicted is if he's

1) DUI;

2) hit-and-run;

3) drivingwithout a licence or with a suspendedlicence;

4) wanted or alreadyknownby the police; or

5) the victim was in a car.

In this case of Dr. Bohm, the victim was on a bike. So as far as we know, no charges.
Failure to yield right of way and failure to exercise due caution are occasionally cited, just very rarely, even though the PD can do this.
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Old 08-30-23, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill
Andrew Bohm

-mr. bill
Dr. Alex Andrew Bohm. A professor at medical school and a scientist, with a Ph. D. from University of California, Berkeley. He's a smart mind, for sure. A huge loss for his family and his students. After knowing a little bit about Dr. Bohm, I'm deeply saddened.

https://facultyprofiles.tufts.edu/alex-bohm/about

Originally Posted by rumrunn6
ours mostly involve a truck at an intersection. but a cpl yrs ago we had the very rare 2 bikes in opposite direction meet head-on, on a paved multi-use path where 1 died. but in the Boston area, it's the trucks & busses that pose the biggest threat. probably why we have so much bike infrastructure being added. I'd have to look at the location in person to see if any sharrows or bike lane line painting, etc. exist there right now & if that would have even helped. probably, but how do you measure that?
Some of these truck and bus drivers lack awareness or fail to consider the width of their vehicles, particularly on the passenger side. A few days ago, a bus operating on a specific city route collided with and severely injured a pedestrian who was crossing the road using a zebra crossing, in the downtown of my city.

Wear clothing with bright/safety colors, turn on the front and rear lights, and ride safely, folks.
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Old 09-01-23, 10:04 AM
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This is obviously a very congested narrow roadway with a blind curve for added difficulty. Truck was driving beside parked cars and most likely needing to squeeze a gap in the traffic. His viewpoint would be very NARROW as well. You can't see nothing coming in the lane beside until you creep ahead, like going thru a line of stopped traffic.
I had a situation like this just 2 days ago while going across a 6 lane avenue in light traffic after supper. A big pickup turned on his light to turn right to this narrow residential street. He just stopped there for some reason. I started out cautiously and sure enough a car was hiding alongside. He said something to me after the car went by.

Then back the last day in grade 9 this happened while walking from school, a taxi laid out a 30 foot trail of rubber and the 2 people yanked their heads around to look at me. LOL. My brother's friend was watching from across this same 6 lane ave.
I had my full heavy briefcase in my left hand.

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Old 09-01-23, 02:30 PM
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My condolences. Side streets that leave at greater than 90 degree angle...cars turning left do not have to slow down as much to turn so they turn at higher speeds and may try to beat others to and through the intersection.

I was caught offguard in this situation. The toyota highlander acted as if it was going to beat me through the intersection and did turn right in front of me, missing me by ten feet, but when the car is moving it seems very scary. I didn't see it coming, reactively hit my right break making my back wheel slide a little sideways. If it had been a couple seconds earlier, I wonder if they would have plowed over me.

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Old 09-01-23, 06:56 PM
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Originally Posted by GamblerGORD53
This is obviously a very congested narrow roadway with a blind curve for added difficulty. Truck was driving beside parked cars and most likely needing to squeeze a gap in the traffic. His viewpoint would be very NARROW as well. You can't see nothing coming in the lane beside until you creep ahead, like going thru a line of stopped traffic.
I had a situation like this just 2 days ago while going across a 6 lane avenue in light traffic after supper. A big pickup turned on his light to turn right to this narrow residential street. He just stopped there for some reason. I started out cautiously and sure enough a car was hiding alongside. He said something to me after the car went by.

Then back the last day in grade 9 this happened while walking from school, a taxi laid out a 30 foot trail of rubber and the 2 people yanked their heads around to look at me. LOL. My brother's friend was watching from across this same 6 lane ave.
I had my full heavy briefcase in my left hand.
Not buying that. The truck was making a left turn, had to observe if any cars were coming before starting his turn. Just somehow missed seeing a cyclist.
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Old 09-02-23, 07:58 AM
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I used to live in Newton Corner (Channing St.), not far from there. If the initial reports are true, I support the assessment that the truck (criminally) failed to yield. If we rely only on laws, however, and think they are going to protect us, we can become lulled into complacency. This is not meant as any slight to the bicyclist. It was perfectly reasonable for him to believe the truck would not turn in front of him. I am just urging everyone to not become distracted, even for an instant, especially in the city. Would extra vigilance have helped give the cyclist enough time to make emergency maneuvers? We do not know.
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Old 09-11-23, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B.
Not buying that. The truck was making a left turn, had to observe if any cars were coming before starting his turn. Just somehow missed seeing a cyclist.
That’s exactly how I was hit back in Nov. of ‘21.

I don’t remember the actual impact, I just remember waking up in a CT scanner in the hospital. But, the police officer on the scene estimated the impact speed at 25mph-35mph, and that tells me that the driver didn’t even come to a stop in the turning lane. He saw no cars and just kept going, until he broadsided me.

Apparently the driver also claimed that he “didn’t see me” and that the sun was in his eyes. The cop cited him for making an illegal left turn, but that was all he could do.
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Old 09-14-23, 03:42 PM
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I'm always sorry to hear of any serious injury or death of cyclists in MV collisions. This seems to be closer to home for some her, so condolences for your loss. Also please accept my apology for using this as a teachable moment.

Left crosses are one of the most common causes of urban cyclist death. Like most here, I blame the drivers, but unlike many here I prefer to focus on understanding how and why these happen and what WE as cyclists can do to stay safe in traffic.

Not excusing the driver, but we need to understand two specific factors that play into this.

1- sweeping A-pillar blind spot. The A-pillar refers to the roof support to the left side of the windshield, in all cars and trucks. Because it's close to the driver, it creates a significant blind spot. Normally this isn't critical because the blind spot of off the line of travel, and objects flash through it in fractions of a second, so aren't lost from sight. Except when making left turns, as the vehicle turns, the blind spot sweeps along the road, front to back. The speeds are often such that an oncoming person or cyclist can sync with the sweeping, and stay out of sight through most of the turn, only coming back into sight at the last second. Car makers and fleet operators are aware of this specific hazard and are working to eliminate the blind spot with video, but it'll be a long while before left turning drivers have reliable sight lines when making left turns.

2- oncoming drivers tend not to notice oncoming cyclists because we're often screened from sight by traffic to our left, and/or camouflaged by all the visual clutter on busy roads. Worse yet, those drivers who do see us are likely to underestimate our speed. (they all do) Also consider that once the driver starts his left turn, his attention will shift to the side road, and pedestrians crossing, so he's no longer looking at you coming from farther down.

So, the practical realities are against us, and we have to take charge of our own safety with well considered counter measures. Start by assuming you're invisible, and be ready to react properly when someone may possible be turning left. Don't wait for them to start their turn, assume that any oncoming driver slowing at an intersection may be planning to turn left, and consider your options. These include:

Moving left into the lane to be more obvious and also to secure an exit path to your left.
Position yourself next to a vehicle to use as a stalking horse as you move through the intersection. Buses and trucks are best for this, though cars are OK too, but be aware that if your blocker accelerates you may be left in the cross hairs.
Decide in advance what you'll do if/when someone starts a left cross. My rule is to steer for the rear axle, and slow if necessary. This allows the vehicle to complete the turn and clear my path, or I can swing father left and clear their rear end (oncoming traffic permitting) Worst case, I can control how I hit them broadside, hopefully taking an angled crash taking the impact on the shoulder. The alternative of trying to turn right, or beating the truck has much more dire results with a miscalculation, so I don't consider it unless I have 100% assurance that the timing is on my side.

As I said, I don't excuse drivers, regardless of understanding that even conscientious drivers make judgement errors. I accept judgement errors as part of my reality and focus on how I can stay safe anyway.
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