A collision between a car and a bicycle in Chesapeake, Virginia (VA), inflicted fatal injuries on the bike rider. The crash happened in the 2800 block of South Military Highway on the night of September 18, 2021.
Chesapeake Police informed news outlets that they received a call shortly before 9 pm “to help someone who had reportedly been hit by a car.” Emergency responders found the bicyclist alive near the intersection of Military Highway and Shell Road, and they had the 60-year-old person transported to the hospital.
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Sadly, the bike rider died from their injuries less than a day after the crash. No one in the car suffered injuries.
Police were able to interview the car’s driver at the scene of the crash, but the official investigation remains open. Investigators are asking anyone who witnessed the collision or who may have relevant information to call the Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP or to submit a tip to www.p3tips.com.
Driver Must Treat Bikes the Same as Other Vehicles
It is unclear if the driver involved in this crash in Chesapeake will face charges. Even if no criminal acts or traffic violations are alleged, the family of the bike rider who lost their life might still have grounds for filing wrongful death claims.
Virginia law allows bicyclists to ride on highway shoulders under certain conditions. State laws and local ordinances also make it possible to ride a bike on surface roads and highways that are not interstates at night. In this case, the bike rider on Military Highway in Chesapeake would be operating legally if they stayed on the shoulder, rode with traffic (i.e., traveled in the same direction as cars and trucks), used lights and compiled with all traffic rules other than the speed limit.
Drivers also have legally enforceable duties to slow down when approaching bike riders from behind and to change lanes or leave a gap of at least three feet when passing. Most importantly, drivers must watch out for bicycles at all times and yield right of way when turning.
Whatever the investigation into this fatal crash reveals, my Virginia Beach-based wrongful death law firm colleagues and I send our deepest condolences out to the friends and family members of the bicyclist who died. We also want everyone who learns of this tragedy to take away the lesson that crashes between cars and bikes can often be avoided by avoiding distractions behind the wheel, following the rules of the road, and sharing the roadway respectfully.