A Tale of Five Phoenix Bike-MV collisions.

Fault was assigned to the bicyclist in four of the five reports. In two of those, the bicyclist was doing something obviously illegal/wrong (riding the wrong way in the roadway, and running into a stopped vehicle). However, the other two do not support that finding — in one a motorist violated a bicyclist’s ROW by turning into it, and in the other a bicyclist was struck by a motorist who was attempting to turn right-on-red.

Perhaps the reason Phoenix has a persistently high bicyclist MaF (Most at Fault) rate is the officers are often not investigating bike-MV crashes correctly?

Coincidentally, both of the “wrong” reports were investigated by the same officer; on the same day; within a couple of hours and miles of one another (both were in Ahwatukee area of Phoenix)

Incident 2349699: Motorist right-hook; BICYCLIST FAULTED?!

Phoenix incident # 091604424. This is a classic right hook, here is the entire narrative: “Unit #1 (the bicyclist) was W/B in the bicycle lane when she collided with Unit #2 (the automobile driver) who was also W/B but making a right turn into the private drive at 4100 E. Equestrian Trail”.

Oddly, the officer concluded the bicyclist was at fault “SPEED TOO FAST FOR CONDITIONS”; whilst the driver was “NO_IMPROPER_ACTION”. The officer estimated speed of the bicycle was 5-10mph. The diagram nor anything else in the report suggest any circumstances where the bicyclist could have possibly been at fault.

Just an aside: this it the driveway to an elementary school, and the vehicle is owned by Kyrene School District. Also, it probably had no bearing given the low speeds involved, but this probably was an active school zone at the time; though there was no mention in the report.

Incident 2318539: Cyclist runs into stopped car

Phoenix incident # 091022224. This one has a twist: “Unit #1 (the bicyclist) was W/B on Pecos driving on the shoulder when he failed to control his vehicle speed and collided with Unit #2 and Unit #3 who were both stopped on the shoulder at 2000 W. Pecos. Unit #2 was an unmarked police car and Unit #3 was the violator who had been stopped”.

The cyclist was faulted and cited for 28-701A, not much else to say! By the way, incidents that do not involve a motor vehicle in transport (both involved vehicles were parked) are not normally entered into the adot database.

Incident 2349705 : Classic Crosswalk Collision

Phoenix incident # 091604985. “Unit #1 (the bicyclist) was E/B on the South sidewalk of Chandler (Blvd) when he rode off the sidewalk and into the crosswalk and began crossing 48th Street when he was struck by Unit #2 who had been stopped on 48th Street in the 2nd right turn lane and was proceeding to make a right turn off of 48th Street onto W/B Chandler” (It seems to me to make this all work out, the cyclist must have been on the North sidewalk, not the south; then everything else fits. The report has no diagram attached)

This intersection is signal controlled; though no mention is made of this (other than box 16 is checked). This is either on purpose, or a glaring omission. When a collision occurs at a signal with units at right angles; fault should be assigned to the unit that had a red light. I would surmise the bicyclist had a green light; and the motorist a red, and was turning right-on-red (est veh speed was 1-2mph), and that the motorist made a violation and should have been assigned fault. In the report, however, the cyclist was faulted for FAILED_TO_YIELD_RIGHT_OF_WAY; the motorist got NO_IMPROPER_ACTION. Had the cyclist actually violated the signal, it would have been DISREGARDED_SIGNAL, and not failure to yield; further evidence that it was the driver who blew the light.

Direction (i.e whether it is with or against the direction of adjacent traffic) of a bicyclist is immaterial on Phoenix sidewalks and crosswalks; it is in no way illegal (see e.g. Maxwell). Right-on-red-turners have an absolute duty to “yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and other traffic”. 28-645(3)(b).

BTW: there are discrepancies between the report and database: Unitaction on the report was blank for Unit 1 and CROSSING ROAD for unit 2 (which is completely wrong; according to the narrative it was Crossing road and Straight Ahead, respectively); in the database, both are GOING_STRAIGHT_AHEAD.

Incident 2319163 Counterflow Bicyclist in Bike Lane

Phoenix incident # 90965679. The database has location info, but the ACR has it: Baseline / Meadows Loop(?).

Narrative: “Unit #1 (the cyclist) was W/B on Baseline in the E/B bicycle lane when she collided with Unit #2 who was N/B on Meadows Loop West stopped at the stop sign at Baseline and made a right turn onto E/B Baseline.

Fault was assigned to the bicyclist; which is pretty clear (it’s illegal to drive on the wrong side when in the roadway, or adjacent shoulder; which includes any bike lane).

Strangely it was listed in the report as HEAD_ON (rather than ANGLE), and NOT intersection related (it seems clear it was both from the narrative and diagram; impact was directly adjacent to the intersection). Also, the motorist’s travel direction was listed as NE (should be N; i.e. unit was northbound turning east; the direction given it supposed to be the direction just before the collision)

Incident 2284018: Weird/Unknown

Phoenix incident # 090427953. Narrative: “Unit #1 (a motorcycle) was S/B on 24th Ave at a high rate of speed when he collided with Unit #2 (a bicyclist) and the road at No witnesses of the collision and both operators of the collision do not remember what occurred. Unit #2 was on the road but unknown where. NOTE: Unit #1 was a reported stolen motorcycle”

The motorcyclist was faulted to TOO FAST. Most else is Unknown.

IncidentID DateTime fault M=motorist b=bicyclist Onroad Crossing
2284018 2009-03-16 10:35:00 M 24th Ave Yavapai St
2319163 2009-06-16 10:48:00 B Baseline Meadow Loop
2318539 2009-06-26 10:54:00 B Pecos Rd 17th Ave
2349699 2009-10-08 08:07:00 B / wrong Equestrian Oneida St
2349705 2009-10-08 10:23:00 B / wrong 48th St Chandler Blvd
SELECT IncidentID,IncidentDateTime,CityId,Onroad,CrossingFeature FROM 2009_incident i WHERE EXISTS (SELECT 1 FROM 2009_unit u WHERE u.IncidentID=i.IncidentID AND u.eUnitType IN ('PEDALCYCLIST')) AND OfficerId=4422 ORDER BY IncidentDateTime;

One thought on “A Tale of Five Phoenix Bike-MV collisions.”

  1. I just realized, the field OfficerId is missing from the crash map data; I should probably go ahead and include it; as it would make it easier to search out individual officers.
    According to this f.b. post; a cyclist Henri Benard was unhappy with this: phx 06070 / incident 2014 – 00338989 apparently Feb 26.
    He has a photo of a piece of paper that seems to suggest there was no crash report; but then, if there is no crash report, why is there an incident number? (maybe that’s normal?).

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