A rear-end collision involving an SUV and a bicycle in the Fuquay-Varina community of North Carolina left the bike rider dead and the driver facing multiple charges for traffic violations and for taking a life. The deadly crash occurred on Christian Light Road, north of the town of Lillington, on the morning of July 21, 2016.
Police identified the deceased bicyclist as 66-year-old Daryl Dwayne Webster. He was wearing a helmet and reflective vest and using bike lights when the at-fault driver hit him from behind. The impact ejected Webster from his bicycle, and he died from his injuries at the scene of the wreck.
The investigation into the fatal bike-SUV crash in Fuquay-Varina continues, but the driver has already been charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle, driving with a revoked license and failure to reduce speed to avoid a collision. It is unclear whether the driver has insurance. If she does not, the family of the bike rider killed as a result of the unlicensed driver's negligence may have coverage under an uninsured motorist provision of the victim's own insurance policy.
This avoidable tragedy in North Carolina highlights how important it is for drivers to treat bicycles just like other vehicles that belong on the road. State law allows bike riders to use almost all surface roads and rural highways. This means that people behind the wheels of cars and trucks must yield right of way, pass carefully and slow down when moving around a bike is not possible. All drivers must act in ways that protect bike riders' lives.