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Car veering away from Los Angeles crash strikes, kills biker

Awareness of surroundings is vital for Los Angeles cyclists. When you ride in the city, you're a few feet or a few inches away from much bigger and heavier motorized vehicles that can do more damage to you than you can do to them. Skills and experience increase chances a bicyclist will avoid a bike injury, but there's no way to know whether drivers are as safety conscious as you.

Accident investigators in the Valley Traffic Division of the Los Angeles Police Department said a female bicyclist was struck on a Canoga Park sidewalk. The fatality was the result of a collision between two cars, in which one vehicle veered away toward the sidewalk following impact. Authorities stated the victim was in her 40's.

There were conflicting reports from police and between local television stations. In some versions, the woman was struck while cycling and in others, the victim was standing with a bike on the sidewalk. CBS Los Angeles accounted for confusion over the woman's identity; she apparently had no identification on her at the time she was struck and killed.

Two people were injured in the crash. KCAL-TV talked with a police investigator who indicated those victims were the drivers of the Toyota and Lexus that collided. One of the unidentified injured parties was listed in critical condition with unspecified injuries – the second driver's injuries reportedly were not as serious as the first driver's.

Police are taking a closer look at the Toyota driver. An LAPD representative said impairment checks are standard procedures after serious accidents. Both hospitalized accident victims are expected to survive.

Cyclists in traffic have a heightened awareness of vehicles moving around them, but sidewalk traffic may feel insulated from danger. The Canoga Park accident shows anyone can become an accident victim. Liability claims help victims on or near a road recover damages for preventable accidents.

Source: KTLA, "Female Bicyclist Dead, 1 in Critical Condition After Collision in Canoga Park Area" Melissa Pamer, Jul. 17, 201 

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