The view from a Google map shows us that Topsfield Road in East Boxford is a small two lane road without much in the way of shoulders. The road winds through a primarily residential area. Any bicyclist riding on this road would need to stick close to the side of the road, but would be forced to share the road with motor vehicles. Conversely, cars would be sharing the road with bicyclists.
Sadly, that did not happen last week and a 54-year-old bicyclist from Ipswich was struck by a car driven by a 21-year-old man from North Andover. The bicycle and car accident resulted in serious injuries to the biker.
According to news sources, the accident took place at about 5:30 in the early evening. There was speculation that the sun may have been in the driver’s eyes, and so he missed seeing the bicyclist, although the sun set at 7:11 that day. There was no mention of distracted driving, although there were two male passengers in the car with the 21-year-old.
When the bicyclist was struck, he was thrown up onto the windshield and over the car to the ground on the other side. The first responders arrived within 15 minutes of the accident and the 54-year-old was air-lifted to Massachusetts General in Boston. One of the first responders reported that the man had severe trauma to his chest, some back issues and a broken shoulder but that he is expected to recover. He was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.
As more people hop on bicycles for transportation, exercise or enjoyment, motorists will need to pay greater attention to sharing the road. An investigation is pending regarding potential charges for this accident. Whether or not there is a traffic violation involved, there may be negligence involved which would enable the 54-year-old to seek personal injury compensation from the 21-year-old driver.
Source: Wicked Local, “Ipswich biker hit by car in East Boxford center last night,” Kate Evans, Sept. 4, 2012