A hit-and-run accident involving an already-injured motorcycle rider and an SUV left the motorcyclist dead on I-85 through Charlotte, North Carolina (NC). The fatal collision occurred near the Statesville Avenue exit a little before 4 am on May 8, 2016.
The deceased victim had been injured and lying in the roadway when he got run over. His bike had blown a tire, ejecting him and his wife from the motorcycle. Witnesses told police and reporters that the person behind of the wheel of the SUV swerved at least twice to avoid the wreckage of the motorcycle and the injured female bike passenger. After rolling over the incapacitated man, however, the SUV driver did not stop.
Law enforcement did not receive a detailed description of the SUV, learning only that it was an older model, dark in color and possibly a Ford. Anyone with more information about the vehicle its driver is being encouraged to contact the State Highway Patrol.
In a tragic irony, this fatal hit-and-run tool place in the first week of Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. Many of the programs and messages related to this national initiative are aimed at motorcyclists, but a key lesson is also that car and truck drivers must share the road attentively and respectfully. When people in larger vehicles fail to spot and respond appropriately to the presence of motorcyclists, lives are often lost.
The driver involved in this Charlotte hit and run appears to have seen the injured motorcyclist, but the second part of the safety equation -- avoiding contact -- went unfulfilled. Fleeing the scene in an effort to avoid responsibility and not offering assistance compounded that error. My Carolina wrongful death attorney colleagues and I hope the driver is identified soon and held accountable for his or her deadly and careless actions.