With two accidents involving cyclists — one fatal — within six hours, Comox Valley RCMP are warning anyone using the roads to be extra cautious during the dark, wet days of December.
Const. Don Sinclair said the first incident, which occurred in the late afternoon Monday near Fitzgerald Avenue in Courtenay, involved a female cyclist and a single vehicle.
“Witnesses said the cyclist appeared to have had the right of way but entered into the path of the van,” he explained, but noted drivers have to be constantly aware of their surroundings.
The female suffered critical injuries and was airlifted to hospital. As of Tuesday, police did not have an update on the condition of the cyclist.
A few hours later at 10:56 p.m., RCMP began an investigation of a missing person in Fanny Bay. At 11:29 p.m., the investigation revealed a man lying in a ditch on Highway 19A near Curran Road.
Police note a 48-year-old male cyclist had been struck by a vehicle going southbound on the highway.
The man was transported to St. Joseph’s Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Sinclair said while the man had illumination on his helmet and was wearing a reflective jacket, there was no lighting on the roadway and he was hit from behind.
He added as the roadway did not have a proper shoulder, he suggested avoiding the highway by bike at night if possible.
Police are requesting the public’s help in locating the vehicle involved in the collision. It is believe it is a white Ford pickup truck and would have damage to the front passenger side, headlight assembly and possibly the windshield area.
Any information about this collision can be passed on to Sgt. M Whitworth of the North Island Traffic Service in Campbell River at 250-286-5646 or to remain anonymous, call CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477.