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Update: Bicyclist remains in serious condition after El Camino collision

Original post made on Dec 19, 2011

Police say a 66-year-old Sunnyvale man remains in serious condition after he was struck by a car while riding his bike on El Camino Real in Mountain View on Monday morning.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, December 19, 2011, 1:39 PM

Comments (27)

Posted by Tom, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 19, 2011 at 6:37 pm

I was one of many that called this in and sincerely hope that this ends well... I've been wondering all day one the cyclist's condition and have said a prayer for him. I can't see how this is the drivers fault as her car was in the far left lane and the cyclist was laying in the center lane. There also isn't a crosswalk at this location.

Either way I hope it turns out ok for all those involved.

Posted by Julie, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 20, 2011 at 9:21 am

Tom, whether there was a crosswalk there hardly matters in determining fault - this was an accident between a car and a bicycle, not a car and a pedestrian. When bicyclists are on the road, they are considered vehicles, so the biggest determiner in who was at fault would be whether the bicyclist was moving in an erratic, unpredictable manner. Please note that I am NOT trying to place the blame on the driver; I don't know what happened any more than you do. But the lack of a crosswalk has nothing to do with fault in this case.

Posted by MV neighbor, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 20, 2011 at 10:22 am

MV voice: please update this story.
I too am hoping for best possible outcome for all involved.

Posted by Observer, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 20, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Was the bicyclist wearing a helmet?

Was the driver talking on a cell phone?

Posted by Ray Morneau, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 20, 2011 at 2:46 pm

Thank you, MV Voice, for the update & I will appreciate if you keep up posted.

Hoping & Praying for both the rider & the driver.
Sad accident, indeed.

I ride my neighborhood a lot. I am glad to see so much good driving on the part of most vehicle operators and cyclists. I will also appreciate the continued conscientious behavior on the part of all. Thanks for everyone's help to keep our neighborhood as safe as possible.

Yes, good questions above as to helmet and to texting.

Continued prayers!

Posted by James Thurber, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 20, 2011 at 4:12 pm

I ride my bicycle everywhere and when I came across this accident I was stunned. The bicycle lay in the middle of the roadway with multiple police officers involved in the investigation. The rider had already been transported to the hospital and traffic was backed up for nearly a mile on El Camino southbound. I hope the bicyclist recovers completely although sixty-six is not an easy age to recover after a serious injury.

That being said I am surprised that we do not have scores of similar accidents in Mountain View / Sunnyvale as many bicycle riders behave very badly and ride in the dark without any lightning whatsoever - even reflectors. Moving like stealth shadows through the night they are extremely difficult to see even under the best of circumstances. Old Mountain View neighborhood can be particularly bad in this regard.

But Sunnyvale and Mountain View are normally bicycle friendly communities with drivers paying attention to us, as long as we behave like vehicles - which we are (vehicles).

Posted by BD, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 21, 2011 at 9:26 am

It's true that cyclists can be hard to see at night, especially without reflectors or headlights. However, this accident took place just after 9 AM, so darkness wouldn't seem to be a factor.

Posted by Individual, a resident of Castro City
on Dec 21, 2011 at 2:51 pm

I wish that every time there was a bike/car accident, everyone's concern wasn't with who's fault it was, as if that would provide some sort of "Ah-HAAAA!" moment of which to validate people's biased opinions over cyclists or drivers
Who's ever fault it was, was at fault for THIS ACCIDENT ONLY and this accident serves as no measuring stick to hold up to anyone else in order to validate any personal biases.

Posted by NoName, a resident of Monta Loma
on Dec 21, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Anytime there's a collision between a bicycle and a car, guess which one is going to win? Car drivers aren't watching for bicycles. Just trying to keep up with the flow of traffic, lane changers, traffic lights, lit signs, plus the millions of other little nits we come across is daunting enough. So when a bicyclist puts himself out there, it really is his responsibility to be extra diligent and maybe not be so aggressive as to think he/she's actually driving a car or truck. The law says the bicycle is a moving vehicle, but I say hey how about lining up with pedestrians who cross at sidewalks. Safety first, you know? No offense to you bicyclists reading this. My concern in this sad case is for the driver of the car who now has this horrible event hanging over her the rest of her life. I think that's a terrible ordeal, no matter whose fault it is. And wishes for a speedy recovery to the bicyclist, too.

Posted by steve, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 21, 2011 at 3:09 pm

I cannot count the number of times I've seen bicyclists put themselves at risk by not following the rules for vehicular traffic. For example: failure to come to a full stop at a stop sign; cutting across cross walks; failing to correctly yield to traffic; and improper illumination at night just to name a few

I don't mean to imply that all cyclists behave this way, and in fact many do follow the rules of the road; however, the number that do not is not a trivial one

Posted by nickyname, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 21, 2011 at 3:30 pm

Cyclists are not obeying the rules of the road. They dart in and out of cars with little regard for safety or following the rules of the road. I've seen a cyclist almost run over pedestrians with out a care. And as well, I've seen pedestrians with a sense of entitlement in just walking in front of cars just as they are turning, expecting them to be able to stop on a dime, just because they are in the sidewalk. If the police would monitor and hand out more tickets for jaywalking and controlling the actions of the rude cyclists, it would cut down on all accidents between cyclists, motorists, and pedestrians.

Posted by mike patterson, a resident of Monta Loma
on Dec 21, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Law enforcment would help. Imagine what would happen if cyclists were cited whenever they rolled through a stop sign or red light. Or even how about all the automobiles that ran stop signs, red lights, failed to signal,were speeding, etc. Try driving past a school when parents are lined up to pick up students. How about pedestrians that look you in the eye then step out into your lane?

Posted by rules of the road, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 21, 2011 at 9:17 pm

Why do bicyclists always ride so far to the right of the lane? They would be much safer staying in the middle of the lane, which is the "rule of the road" for vehicles. Riding off to the right makes the bicycles harder to see and encourages cars to run them off the road. If bicycles obeyed the normal rule of the road and used the middle of the lane, then car drivers would give them the same courtesy that they give other car drivers and change lanes to go around them.

Posted by MV neighbor, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 22, 2011 at 9:23 am

MV Voice Please continue to update this story with cyclist's condition and details.

Sometimes the glare of morning sun also makes visibility difficult so I agree with other comments that every accident is unique and not necessarily generalizable. Regardless, increasing safe habits, awareness and respect on the sides of both cyclists and drivers is a good thing. There are seemingly fearless or reckless cyclists who scare me when I am in a car and impatient, distracted drivers that scare me when I am on my bike. But no one wants to be in an accident on either side. I continue to hope for the best possible outcome for all involved and especially a quick recovery for the injured cyclist.

Posted by DCS, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 22, 2011 at 2:19 pm

A bicyclist scared me half to death the other day. I approached the intersection really slow just in case he didn't stop, and he went right through the stop sign. I don't know how common this is, but it was really really scary.

Posted by Kevin Smith, a resident of Gemello
on Dec 22, 2011 at 4:24 pm

Dang, I was hoping for an update on this article. I passed the scene of the accident just after 9 on Tuesday while the rider was laying on the pavement just after police got there, but before paramedics has arrived. I didn't see a helmet on the rider and there was a pool of blood around his head. I too said a quick prayer and have been wondering how he has fared.

Fault doesn't really matter here ... this is tragic for both the car driver and the bicycle rider. I'm sure both made mistakes and will be blaming themselves for the rest of their lives.

Posted by Jay S., a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 22, 2011 at 7:31 pm

Why doesn't the Mountain View Voice provide any updates on the condition of the victim?

Posted by NeHi, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Dec 22, 2011 at 7:43 pm

At 9am an eastbound motorist is facing a rising sun.

I stopped riding any distance on El Camino when it was widened years ago. My ride was longer but safer.

I also learned to "ride as if you are invisible" as you often are.

Posted by Andy, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 23, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Can we please have an update?

Posted by Linda, a resident of another community
on Dec 24, 2011 at 8:16 pm

The bike rider is my brother Henry. He is in critical condition @ Stanford Hospital. He isn't doing well. His condition isn't helped by his pre-existing heart condition...

I don't know any more details of the accident than the rest of you. I thank you for your concern and well wishes. I will relay the good thoughts to him. I don't know if he'll hear them, but I'd like to think so.

Posted by MV neighbor, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 25, 2011 at 12:23 pm

Thank you Linda for the information. I will continue to think good thoughts for your brother's recovery. I hope the spirit of the season helps bring him back to health. Play some music he likes for him. Music reaches us all in inexplicable ways.. Best wishes to you and your family at this difficult time.

Posted by Ray Morneau, a resident of Shoreline West
on Dec 28, 2011 at 3:15 pm

Thank you so much, Linda, for the update. Continued best wishes for you and your family - especially your brother, Henry. Tell him this fellow rider is rooting for him! And, our fellow neighbor's suggestion of music sounds particularly appropriate. Best, Ray

Posted by neighbor, a resident of Shoreline West
on Jan 2, 2012 at 4:25 pm

Any update? I truly hope his condition has improved.

Posted by Joan, a resident of another community
on Jan 2, 2012 at 4:43 pm

Although still in intensive care Henry has been up and did some walking. Visitors are allowed but must wear a gown. Steve G. to visit today. May have further update later. Henry is said to have good days and not so good days. That is to be expected.

Posted by MV neighbor, a resident of Shoreline West
on Jan 4, 2012 at 7:19 pm

Thank you Joan for the update. It sounds like he is making good, even if slow progress and gaining strength. I will continue to think good thoughts for his continued recovery.

Posted by John, a resident of Shoreline West
on Jan 9, 2012 at 3:50 pm

MV-voice any updates to this story? How the accident happened? The cyclists recovery?

Posted by Sam, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Sep 16, 2012 at 10:44 pm

My thoughts go out to you Linda. And Oh Henry! I hope you have since recovered.

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