Two tragedies last night:
A 26-year-old woman named Angela Burke, from New York, was walking her bike in the bike lane on SW Barbur just past 10:30pm when the driver of a Subaru struck and killed her. The driver, 28-year-old Caleb Pruitt, was "driving at a high rate of speed and appeared to lose control of the car before striking Burke" according to police investigators. He has been booked into jail on charges of DUII and Criminally Negligent Homicide. I've never walked around there, but that stretch of Barbur is scary to ride—the stripe of bike lane paint doesn't protect too much from the five lanes of car traffic.
Portland police spokesman Pete Simpson notes that there is no sidewalk on the west side of Barbur where Burke was walking. "There's a shoulder with some grass and dirt, but there's no sidewalk," says Simpson. Investigators think she was planning to cross the street.
Here's the Google Map snapshots of that location:
UPDATE: Friends of Barbur, a Facebook group devoted to improving the safety of SW Barbur for pedestrians and people on bikes has this better photo of the road near the crash. Go check out their group, too, here's what they say about the crash:
Regardless of all the factors that contributed to this incident, it seems safe to say that this area desperately needs better pedestrian crossings. A Trimet stop is located across a five lanes of high-speed traffic from a major residential area. The only support pedestrians receive here is an unlit overhead sign and a cut-through in the curb.
Across town on North Lombard and Ida Avenue, another Subaru struck another pedestrian at 8:46pm last night. Police investigators say that 21-year-old Zachary Krick walked in front of a Subaru Legacy driven by 44-year-old Joseph McCormack when the car had a green light. The Subaru struck Krick, who is currently in the hospital with serious but non life-threatening injuries.
Oregon pedestrian deaths are up 80 percent this year. More on this story as we have it.
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