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Cyclist dies in collision

The Arizona Daily Sun: Cyclist dies in collision

Joshua Pete, 23, of Flagstaff becomes entangled with a city truck making a right turn from Butler Avenue into the recycling center.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A 23-year-old Flagstaff man riding a bicycle died Monday morning after he and a heavy, city-owned transport truck collided on Butler Avenue and Babbitt Way at the entrance to the recycling center.

Joshua Amos Pete and the truck driver were both traveling westbound on Butler Avenue at the time of the collision, with Pete in the marked bike lane, police said. The investigation so far indicates that the truck and the bicyclist collided at about 11:15 a.m. as the truck was making a right turn into the driveway. Pete became entangled in the truck’s wheel housing and was dragged some distance before the vehicle came to a stop in the driveway of the recycling center. Reports indicate he was severely injured and was pronounced dead at Flagstaff Medical Center at 11:39 a.m.

The collision caused the closure of one westbound lane on Butler Avenue for several hours while accident reconstructionists conducted their investigation.

It is still undetermined who, if anybody, was at fault in the collision, said Sgt. Michael Terrin of the Flagstaff Police Department.

Investigators are in the process of interviewing witnesses to determine the color of the traffic signal at the intersection and whether the driver of the truck was properly signaling the right turn, Terrin said.

Per city policy, the truck driver will undergo tests for drugs or alcohol. The driver was behind the wheel of a "roll off" truck, a large, flatbed vehicle that resembles a tractor-trailer and is typically used to haul industrial-sized recycling or garbage bins.

Flagstaff City Manager Kevin Burke said Monday in a prepared statement: "As an organization, we are truly saddened as is our community by today’s tragic accident and loss of life. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Joshua Pete."

He continued: "This tragedy is being thoroughly investigated and as public information becomes available, we will certainly work closely with the family to keep them informed."

Burke then suggested the community support and pray for Pete’s family.

From the Arizona Revised Statutes

A.R.S.28-754. Turning movements and required signals

A. A person shall not turn a vehicle at an intersection unless the vehicle is in proper position on the roadway as required in section 28-751, or turn a vehicle to enter a private road or driveway or otherwise turn a vehicle from a direct course or move right or left on a roadway unless and until the movement can be made with reasonable safety. A person shall not so turn any vehicle without giving an appropriate signal in the manner provided by this article in the event any other traffic may be affected by the movement.

B. A signal of intention to turn right or left when required shall be given continuously during not less than the last one hundred feet traveled by the vehicle before turning.

C. A person shall not stop or suddenly decrease the speed of a vehicle without first giving an appropriate signal in the manner provided by this article to the driver of any vehicle immediately to the rear when there is opportunity to give the signal.