View Full Version : crash in south miami, please keep the injured in your thoughts!

08-29-2007, 07:32 AM
Last night there was a serious crash in south miami(about 45 minutes south of me) 12 riders injured, 2 of them seriously(one was airlifted out). I do not know anyone personally who was injured, but I see all of these guys at the crits, and race against some.

Please keep them in your thoughts.

Here is the article from the miami herald, along with a link to the original article.

Follows is this morning’s Miami Herald article:


11 bicyclists hurt in collision with SUV
A pack of bicyclists collided with a vehicle in Kendale Lakes, seriously injuring two riders and hurting nine others.
Posted on Wed, Aug. 29, 2007
Digg del.icio.us AIM reprint print email



An officer works and injured bicyclists commiserate at the scene Tuesday in Kendale Lakes.

Video | Tragedy on the roads
Bicyclists riding at least 30 mph were unable to avoid a vehicle that pulled into their path Tuesday evening on a Kendale Lakes roadway, leaving two riders critically injured and hurting several others.

''The impact created a real domino effect,'' said Miami-Dade fire-rescue Lt. Shanti Hall. ``The front of the pack is what hit the car, and then everyone behind them piled on top.''

Rescuers set up a triage area on Kendale Lakes Circle, a looping trail along the Miccosukee Golf and Country Club, to assess the multiple casualties. Besides the two bicyclists who were flown to Jackson Memorial Hospital's Ryder Trauma Center in Miami, five others were taken to area hospitals and four were treated at the scene, Hall said.

Ramon Joa avoided serious injury, but said it was ''devastating'' to watch his fellow riders get mangled in the crash. He said there were about 40 riders in the group.

''There were cyclists flying all over, the glass of the car flying all over,'' Joa told Miami Herald news partner WFOR-CBS4. ``One of the riders, his hand was pinned underneath the tire of the car.''

The bicycle group rides along the four-mile Kendale Lakes Circle loop about five nights a week, according to neighborhood residents and some of the bicyclists. They use the course for race training, often hitting speeds of 30 to 35 mph.

''They usually get together around 4 or 4:30 in the afternoon, and they ride hard,'' said Miami attorney Lee Marks, a bike enthusiast who has been on rides with the Kendale Lakes group. ``We're talking high-intensity training.''

The pack was riding west on Southwest 62nd Street -- Kendale Lakes Circle -- when a driver pulled out of an apartment-complex driveway onto the roadway about 5:30 p.m., said Miami-Dade police Detective Alvaro Zabaleta.

The driver failed to yield the right of way to the bicyclists, causing them to slam into the small sport utility vehicle, Zabaleta said. Traffic homicide detectives are investigating the incident and had not filed any citations or charges Tuesday. The driver's name was not released.

Neighborhood residents said it's possible the driver's view of the roadway was obstructed by a row of cars parked in the street's bike lane. The cars have been parked there during renovations to the apartment complex's parking lot.

The two most seriously injured cyclists were in critical but stable condition late Tuesday, Zabaleta said.

Beker Esteban, who lives across the street from the site of the crash, said he sees the bicyclists riding their thin-wheeled racing bikes and wearing bright-colored jerseys almost every day.

''I've been here since '95, and back then they used to come in groups of 10, 15 people,'' Esteban said. ``But now it's dozens of them, and they fly through the streets.

''This is not a safe place to ride a bike at high speeds,'' he added. ``It makes it dangerous for everybody.''

Bicycle groups -- both recreational and racing -- organize rides in various parts of Miami-Dade County. Many ride at off-peak driving times so the roads are less busy. At least two cities, Coral Gables and Miami Beach, offer police-escorted bike rides once a month.

Cyclists ride together for safety, Marks said.

''Drivers typically pay more attention if you're riding in a group,'' Marks said. ``They slow down and pass safely. If you're riding alone, cars just overtake you and zoom past.''

Florida passed a law last year that makes it illegal for drivers to pass bicyclists with less than three feet of space between them. A push for the law came after cyclist Omar Otaola was struck and killed by a truck in Key Biscayne in February 2006.

The past two years, members of the Everglades Bike Club helped organize a Ride of Silence in Miami-Dade to urge improved safety for riders, and Coral Gables has hosted a number of town-hall meetings in recent years to educate riders and motorists about sharing the roads.

A fatal crash involving a bicyclist happened in May 2002 in the same neighborhood as Tuesday's incident. Miami firefighter Jose A. Menendez Jr., a father of three, was killed when he was riding his bike along Kendale Lakes Drive and crashed into a parked landscaping truck. That road loops around the outside of the golf course, while the site of Tuesday's crash was on an interior road.

Miami Herald staff writer David Smiley and WFOR-CBS4 reporter Natalia Zea contributed to this report.

08-29-2007, 07:37 AM
wow, they were going really fast!
I hope they all heal fast and the SUV driver gets more attentive.

08-29-2007, 08:43 AM
I don't know, that article sounds an awful lot like, 'bad cyclist, your fault for getting hurt'.

I mean, the comment about how it's not safe to ride bikes at high speeds on that road? What is the speed limit for cars? From what I see, the speed they were riding is a moot point. The large size of their pack should have given them just as much visibility as a car, and they sound like they were going the speed of a car, so.... why does it rub me as though they are trying to blame the cyclists? Although it does seem as if they maybe should have used more caution considering the parked cars, it's really hard to tell what really was the situation there because articles always slant things one way or another.

Anyway, I really hope everyone is okay... I shuddered at the hand under the tire thing!


short cut sally
08-29-2007, 08:44 AM
I had to reread the article where it said that vehicles were parked in the bike lane due to construction...I would think that would play also in to the accident. Hopefully all the involved bikers are going to be okay with no long term problems, and that there will be safer crossings for vehicles and riders once this construction is done.

08-29-2007, 08:52 AM
Mimi- they were going fast, but that is the speed of sprints in the crits, the crits average around 26-27mph. Florida is flat, and races are fast!(that group ride was a race training ride).

It also rubbed me the wrong way how they seemed to blame the cyclists- they also said that they haven't decided who is to blame yet, well hello the cyclists were on the main road, the car pulled into oncoming traffic!

All of us down here are just hoping that everyone is ok. My team is seeing if there is anything that we can do to help those who have been hurt.

08-29-2007, 09:25 AM
First and foremost, I hope everyone comes out okay. That is a tragedy for sure.

The only thing I have to add to the discussion of who's fault or how fast should they be going is this ... The cyclists should only travel as fast as the posted speed limit. In neighborhoods, sometimes the speed limits are 25 mph. If that is the case, then that's how fast the cyclists should have been traveling ... period. Now if the speed limit was 35 mph, they would have been traveling at a speed that is acceptible.

Pedal Wench
08-29-2007, 09:29 AM
My BF lives and rides in Miami, but wasn't part of that ride or club. He said that the first report he said definitely blaimed the cyclists. It's sad, especially since people were so seriously injured. I can't believe that they're not charging the driver - if you can't see an approaching peloton of 40 riders, you have no business pulling out into the lane.

08-29-2007, 09:42 AM
The driver failed to yield the right of way to the bicyclists

The rest of the tone of the article notwithstanding, I believe this statement assigns blame correctly.

Here in BC, last Friday night a driver of a truck plowed into a group of about 40 people who were in a wedding party and doing a traditional walk from house to house. They were on a busy street with no street lights and it was dusk. They did have a car with 4 way flashers that was not yet in position when the truck crested the hill and hit the people. 6 were killed and I think 11 were injured. I think 5 are still in hospital. They were all in one family. The driver spoke on radio saying it wasn't his fault. Some witnesses say the lights weren't on. Terrible, terrible incidents! The injured must heal, the witnesses must heal, and the drivers must heal. I'm sending more butterflies to Florida now, too.


08-29-2007, 10:33 AM
That is just terrible. I hope everyone involved will recover and learn from this tragedy. I will keep these cyclists in my thoughts.

I agree that the article is slanted. Even though the article mentioned the driver failed to yield to the right of way, I was bothered they included comments in the article like, ''This is not a safe place to ride a bike at high speeds...It makes it dangerous for everybody," and "Neighborhood residents said it's possible the driver's view of the roadway was obstructed by a row of cars parked in the street's bike lane. The cars have been parked there during renovations to the apartment complex's parking lot." Those comments were included not just to inform the reader...they were included to cast doubt. This seems to happen a lot. Whenever I see a news story about a motorist/cyclist collision, there are always excuses as to why the motorist did not see the cyclist. You even see these excuses used in court cases involving these types of collisions. But when the collision involves a motorist/motorist...people seem to see it more black and white.

And I have to agree with what Tiffany said, too. I am not sure what the posted speed limit is in the area of the crash, but cyclists need to obey the posted speed limit. Even though what ultimately should determine who is at blame (motorist failing to yield to the right of way), speed of everyone involved will go into the accident report. I ride at White Rock Lake in Dallas a few times a week...it is a very popular place for local cyclists to train. But everyday I am out there I see cyclists not obeying the rules of the road (posted speed limits, stop signs, yield signs, etc.). A lot of cyclist seem to think the rules of the road do not apply to them, yet they want motorists to respect them out there? There is even a sign posted at the lake at a stop sign reminding both motorists and cyclists that cyclists are granted the same RIGHTS and DUTIES as a motorist...but most of the cyclists blow through that stop sign while cars wait. While I agree that most motorists don't understand/don't care about the rights cyclists are granted on the road...cyclists are a big part of the problem, too.

I apologize for my rant. I have been doing a lot of thinking about this lately. I keep hearing about more and more collisions between cyclists and motorists. And recently I had a bad incident happen to me at the lake that involved a motorist (who was also a cyclist!)...so these issues have been on my mind.