Quad Cities Bicycle Club shares safety tips and honors life of Thursday’s fatal hit-and-run victim
DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) - One man has died after a hit-and-run crash in Davenport Thursday afternoon. The victim, identified as 40-year-old Alex Marietta, was biking at the intersection of Kimberly Road and and Davenport Avenue when he was hit by a red Chevy Tahoe that ran a red light. This is the third fatal accident involving a bicyclist in the quad city area this year.
Quad Cities Bicycle Club member, Ben Lloyd, knew Marietta and says he was an experienced rider.
“He was a very accomplished rider and had gone thousands and thousands of miles and really knows what he was doing,” Lloyd says.
Lloyd says bike accidents are preventable and drivers need to be aware of bicyclists on the road.
“There’s all kinds of things we can do to improve that relationship with drivers to make sure drivers aren’t frustrated with us. Anyone behind the wheel of a car can be made aware or take the time or just have the willingness and the patience to slow down, stop at a yellow light, not be so pedal to the metal. We are all busy and I understand that but none of it is worth making a mistake or going over the speed limit to make it through a red light,” says Lloyd.
He says cyclists can do their best to be seen by wearing reflective and bright clothing, but distracted driving can be fatal.
“I don’t care how bright your helmet is or how many flashers you have, if someone is on a cell phone or talking to someone, we don’t have a chance. I can’t assume that I am being seen. Wave, yell, whistle, do whatever to know that you’re seen, make eye contact, whatever it takes. It’s worth taking a second or two to make sure that someone sees us,” Lloyd says.
“Nothing is worth killing a cyclist to get somewhere, I guarantee it. The guilt you are going to feel or the criminal charges you are going to face, it’s not worth killing someone like me or a friend or anyone. It’s not worth it,” says Lloyd.
According to an arrest affidavit, Bobby F. Hunt Jr., 33, was the driver and is charged with homicide by reckless driving, a Class C felony, leaving the scene of a fatality crash, a Class D felony, and interference with official acts, a simple misdemeanor. He also was cited for reckless driving.
Hunt was later identified as the driver and only occupant of the SUV. Police also learned he was speeding, failed to stop at a red light at the intersection, and collided with the Marietta, who had the right of way. Officers later responded to his home and Hunt admitted to striking Marietta and leaving the scene. His SUV had damage consistent with striking Marietta. While speaking with officers, Hunt fled and refused officers’ commands to stop, according to the affidavit. Investigators from the Davenport Police Department’s Traffic Safety Unit are investigating the crash.
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