On July 15, 2008, a bicyclist traveling northbound through the intersection of The Embarcadero and Mission Street ran a red light and struck and killed a pedestrian. The victim, Dionette Cherney, was visiting from Washington, D.C. She had the right of way and was crossing . She died of head injuries a month later. The bicyclist recently plead not guilty to misdemeanor vehicular manslaughter.
For more on this, visit SFGate.com here.
The important lesson to learn (and one that can never be repeated enough) is to be proactive in your own safety. Bicyclists must obey rules of the road, including signs and signal lights. As we’ve seen here, even having the right-of-way doesn’t mean the conditions are completely safe. It is best to be always on the lookout for others that share the road, whether they be cyclists, motorists, or pedestrians. Even though there are signs, signal lights, and other rules of the road, we all know that those rules are no guarantee. Road conditions change constantly – a cyclist might appear out of nowhere; a car might be coming down the street that you didn’t see before; a pedestrian may be suddenly crossing the street.
Taking proactive and preventative measures puts you as the commuter in a position to know that you have done everything to watch out for your safety. While you can’t control all the factors on the road, taking proactive and preventative measures is making sure you control what you can to make it as safe as possible.