The Chainlink

Angela Park, 39 y.o. Female Bicyclist Killed by Truck Driver Turning Right in Greektown

From WGN...

CHICAGO — A bicyclist is in critical condition after being hit and pinned under a truck Thursday morning.

It happened at Madison and Halsted in the city’s Greektown neighborhood. The bicyclist was transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

Eastbound Madison is closed from Halsted to the Kennedy Expressway. Westbound Madison is closed from Des Plaines to Halsted.


So sorry to say the 39 y.o. female cyclist died. The truck driver was making a right turn (right hook). Our thoughts are with the cyclist's family and friends.

UPDATE 8/10:
Bicyclist has been identified as Angela Park. Our thoughts are with her loved ones. Rest in peace.

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Is there information about funeral arrangements? I was curious as to who she was, and I found that it could be the tri-coach; however, I don't want to speculate.
A sad day to begin the morning!

Here's a link to her LI profile:
In general, there is a nationwide shortage of truck drivers. To cyclists, this means the cohort of drivers will be increasingly newer and less experienced for the foreseeable future. Be ever more vigilant.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Angela and her family and friends. We are always sad to hear of fellow cyclists who have died as a result of a motorist encounter. Education continues to be a top priority.
This is heartbreaking. Her poor daughters :(

Obviously we don't know the specifics of the crash but there are several major problems on the road right now:

1) All trucks over a certain size need the side guard required. The current law is NOT enough. PLEASE write your alderman and Rahmbo. Write JB and Rauner.

2) All drivers need more education on how to share the road with cyclists. This needs more emphasis as part of our driver's education process. PLEASE contact the IL Secretary of State's office. The idea of numerous bikers on the road combined with bike lanes is new for most drivers, especially those from the suburbs, we all need to understand that. I am a biker but also a driver. I have to actively remember to look for bikes when opening my car door and when turning right, or pulling over to parallel park. But that is mostly because I am a biker. It isn't second nature because I wasn't taught that 30 years ago when I learned to drive and it really wasn't an issue for the first 20 years of my driving.

3) We need more education on defensive cycling. They teach it in driver's education, why not for cyclists? Even more reason for cyclists, truck vs. bike or car vs. bike, bike is going to lose. I am shocked that people on this forum are advocating for more aggressive biking, that is the wrong answer. The answer is more cycling for self preservation. Your aggressive biking techniques are not going to change the world, they are only going to get yourself killed and make other people anti-biking. When approaching an intersection, assume the driver of the car can't see you or isn't looking for you and adjust accordingly, especially if it is a truck. If you can't see the driver's face looking at you in the mirror, he isn't looking at you or can't see you. There are precautions we all take as pedestrians and drivers, why not take all of those same precautions as bikers. Going back to my second point, if we understand the problems, we can change our behavior to minimize our risk. This isn't accepting the status quo, it is accepting the reality and trying to stay safe. There are other more effective methods of changing the status quo.

FYI - there is a law under consideration on the NATIONAL level regarding truck side guards. It also proposed front and rear guards. It looks like the primary goal is to prevent underride crashes with cars, but it would be very beneficial for bikes. It's worth writing to your U.S. Senators and Representative and urging them to support this bill.  In addition, there should be requirement for convex mirrors mounted at the front corners of trucks. This would greatly improve a truck driver's ability to see cyclists and peds around the front corners and sides of the truck.

National - S.2219 / H.R. 4622- Stop Underrides Act of 2017 (in committee) -  “This bill amends federal transportation law to require the Department of Transportation (DOT) to issue a final rule to require the installation of rear underride guards that meet a specified performance standard on all trailers, semi-trailers, and single unit trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds that are manufactured on or after the effective date of the rule.

DOT shall issue a final rule requiring the installation of side underride guards that meet a specified performance standard on all trailers, semi-trailers, and single unit trucks with a gross vehicle rating of more than 10,000 pounds manufactured on or after the effective date of the rule.

DOT shall issue a final rule requiring all commercial motor vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds manufactured on or after the effective date of the rule to be equipped with front underride guards. It shall complete research on equipping commercial motor vehicles with a gross weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds with a front underride guard to prevent trucks from overriding the passenger vehicle and submit to the congressional transportation committees a report on such research.”

There’s been some research on this:

The study was blunt in its conclusions: "Women may be over-represented in (collisions with goods vehicles) because they are less likely than men to disobey red lights."

By jumping red lights, it said, men are less likely to be caught in a lorry driver's blind spot, whereas less assertive cyclists who wait at the lights just in front of a lorry are at greater risk as they cannot be seen by the driver.

Some would conclude from that research that it is safer to be aggressive and disobey red lights.  Others would conclude that it is safer to take the 3rd option and stop behind the truck, wait for the green light and then proceed safely behind the truck in case it happens to turn in the intersection.  I do the 3rd option.  

Of course, proceeding behind a truck might leave you at risk of being hooked by an oncoming car making a left turn and not seeing you behind the big truck. :/

"If you are attending the service tomorrow, it would be Angela’s wishes that you wear pink or sparkly clothing."

A  GBC memorial vigil service is being planned and will most probably be held on Friday, August 31, 7:10, at Halsted and Madison. This will be in conjunction with the August CCM Ride.


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