Bicycle enthusiasts in Gilroy, California, are wondering whether the California Highway Patrol is conducting a thorough investigation of a fatal bicycle that killed 58-year-old cyclist Bruce Finch on October 5, 2008, the Morgan Hill Times reports. CHP officials say Finch was riding on Uvas Road when his bike collided with a 1997 Honda driven by 60-year-old Rita Campos who was stopped at the intersection of Uvas and Little Uvas roads.
Campos was traveling east on Little Uvas while Finch was riding south on Uvas. Cyclists who are familiar with those roads say travelers on Uvas Road have the right of way at this intersection. On that road, bicycles get up to speeds of 25 mph, but cars travel faster at 45 or 50 mph. Moreover, local bicyclists describe Finch as a “very strong as safe cyclist.”
This auto accident has sparked a heated debate about who was at fault for this fatal bicycle accident. Many postings on cycling messaging boards on the Internet have accused Campos of negligence. They also say CHP officials have not done their due diligence in investigating this collision. CHP officials say Campos has not yet been arrested or cited pending an investigation. They also say that typically, fatal investigation accidents take about 30 days to complete and they have no bias against cyclists.
There is no question that this is a huge tragedy for Bruce Finch’s family and his friends in the local community. I offer my heartfelt sympathies to everyone who knew and loved him.
The CHP is usually quite thorough with its accident investigations. But given today’s environment of budget deficits, not all departments have the time and resources to delve deep into such incidents. A lawyer, who is experienced in handling bicycle versus motor vehicle collisions, will be able to get to the bottom of it.
Based on this news report, I’d urge the family of Bruce Finch to retain the services of a reputed California bicycle accident attorney who can help look into this incident and determine who was responsible and who had the right of way. The best law firms will offer the victim’s family a free and comprehensive consultation.