Driver hits bicyclist; citation not issued, Stillwater police say

STILLWATER, Okla. (KFOR) – Stillwater police are reminding drivers to be on the lookout for bicyclists after a recent incident left a bicyclist injured, and police say the driver was not issued a citation.

On Oct. 14, just after 7 p.m., Stillwater police were called to the area near Lakeview and Washington for an injury accident investigation.

According to Stillwater police, a bicyclist was traveling westbound on Lakeview Road, near the bridge, in the outside lane while a Chevy pickup was also traveling westbound on Lakeview in the same lane.

Police say the pickup struck the bicyclist from behind, injuring the bicyclist.

A witness told police the bicyclist had a red flashing light on the back of his helmet at the time of the incident.

Stillwater police say “the officer investigating the accident noted in his report that the driver of the pickup failed to maintain the required three feet of clearance for a cyclist, and the driver’s unsafe/unlawful action of following too close contributed to the accident.” The officer also noted that “the bicyclist had no known actions that contributed to the crash.”

The officer did not issue a citation to the driver of the pickup for following too close or failing to maintain a three-foot safety zone.

According to the Stillwater Police Department’s policy, “officers are not required by policy to issue citations at every traffic accident. Officers are expected to evaluate each traffic collision as an individual incident and issue citations, warnings, or make arrests as the officer determines appropriate.”

Police say drivers should know that bicyclists have the same rights to the road as the motoring public and drivers should be more attentive to bicyclists as they are likely to be injured during a collision.

Stillwater police also released the number of accidents involving bicycles within the past three years.

2017

  • 1,498 accidents – eight involved bicycles
  • No citations were written in accidents involving bicycles
  • In all of the accidents, 19% resulted in citations

2018

  • 1,358 accidents – seven involved bicycles
  • No citations were written in accidents involving bicycles
  • In all of the accidents, 18% resulted in citations

2019 – to date

  • 1,134 accidents – 12 involved bicycles
  • Of those 12, citations were written in two of the accidents
  • In all other accident, 35% resulted in citations
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