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Car hits bicyclist in middle of highway

By KSL.com | Posted - Mar. 18, 2011 at 7:12 a.m.


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KAYSVILLE — Alcohol was believed to be a factor in an auto-bicycle accident early Friday. But it was the bicyclist, not the driver of the car, who was believed to have been drinking.

Just after 1 a.m., a 37-year-old man was riding a bicycle down the middle of U.S. 89 near Crestwood Drive. The road is very dark in that area.

A vehicle, driving the 55 mph speed limit, hit the cyclist. The Utah Highway Patrol said the 18-year-old driver did not see the man until it was too late.

"The bike did have some reflective, but traveling at 55 miles per hour in a dark area, it gave him little time to react," UHP Sgt. Kim Farnsworth said.

The bicyclist suffered severe trauma to his lower legs and arm and a minor head injury. He was flown by medical helicopter to Intermountain Medical Center in Murray in critical condition.

"What medical personnel are saying at this point is that (there are) severe lower leg injuries to the point of near amputation," Farnsworth said.

Investigators detected an odor of alcohol on the bicyclist and said he had alcohol in his possession. Troopers say the man was carrying no identification so they're not sure who he is.

The driver was not cited for the accident. Troopers say he is traumatized but they assured him there was very little he could have done to prevent the wreck.

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Written with contributions from Pat Reavy, Shara Park and Randall Jeppesen.


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