A 63-year-old man was killed while riding his bicycle on Lancaster Avenue on Monday night.
According to police reports, which have not yet identified the victim, the man was riding his bicycle east on Lancaster Avenue, in the bike lane, when a driver struck him from behind.
The driver then slammed into a utility pole, severely damaging their car. The driver was later arrested, but charges are not yet known. If you have any more information about this case, and/or witnessed it, please reach out to the Philadelphia Police Department.
Monday night’s deadly crash marks the eighth bicyclist killed in Philadelphia this year. Eight bicyclists is far more than an average year in the city, and is actually the most cyclists killed in a single year since 1997.
These deadly crashes are both preventable and policy choices made by the city. The rising number of bicyclist and pedestrian deaths is a result of cutting Vision Zero funds and the glacial pace at which safe streets projects develop in Philadelphia.
Lancaster Avenue, unfortunately, fits the template of a Philly street where a deadly crash would happen: It is a PennDOT-owned road, wide, and — of course — already part of the High Injury Network (the 12 percent of streets where 80 percent of all deadly and injurious crashes take place.)
Between this crash, and a pedestrian struck and killed Monday night on Roosevelt Boulevard, traffic crashes have claimed the lives of 106 Philadelphians, so far, in 2021.
While this is far below the 156 people killed in traffic in 2020, it is already more than the average year Philadelphia has seen over the past decade. Traffic deaths are trending up in Philadelphia.
There are a number of changes that need to be made, now — and not just the restoration of Vision Zero funds. Legislation from both the city and state government has been sitting in committees waiting to be passed for over a year. And safe streets projects that have already been approved and fully funded continue getting delayed.
On Sunday, November 21, Families for Safe Streets Greater Philadelphia will participate in the international World Day of Remembrance for traffic violence victims at Cobbs Creek Parkway, beginning at 11am.
All are welcome to attend as we call for an end to traffic violence and the legislative changes that can begin to reverse the trend of rising traffic deaths in Philadelphia. We will be joined by Senator Anthony Hardy Williams, Councilmember Isaiah Thomas, Councilmember Jamie Gauthier, and others.
Meanwhile, we will be seeking more information on the recent crashes that claimed this man’s life on Monday night. Our thoughts go out to this man’s family and friends. And again, if you witnessed this crash, please reach out to the police.