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Name release Hamilton cycle fatality

Name release Hamilton cycle fatality
Tuesday, 8 July 2014 - 1:24pm

Waikato

As the investigation into yesterday's fatal collision between a van and a cyclist on Hamilton's eastern outskirts continues, Waikato Police say there are a number of lessons that can be learned.

District Road Policing Manager, Inspector Freda Grace, said the crash that claimed the life of 53-year-old Hamilton cyclist, Margaret Mary POUW, is still under investigation and the cause was yet to be confirmed.

"Initial indications suggest the cyclist has been travelling north on Morrinsville Rd shortly before 7am and gone to turn right into Matangi Rd, directly into the path of an oncoming south bound Courier van.

"At this stage speed and alcohol on the part of the van driver, who was shaken but unhurt in the crash, do not to appear to have been factors in what has occurred and these and other matters will be confirmed as the crash investigation continues."

Ms Grace said one thing that has been confirmed in the investigation is the need for all road users to ensure they, and what ever vehicle they are using, are fit for the road.

"Investigations such as this aren't about apportioning blame. They're about establishing cause so we can work at preventing a repeat of what happened.

"In this case the cyclist was wearing a cycle helmet, had hi-vis clothing on and her bike was equipped with a light. As we've said, speed does not appear to have been a factor in what happened so then we need to look at decisions that were made leading up to the crash."

Mrs Grace said decision making became not just an issue in terms of the crash but also for other road users in and around the crash area as emergency services worked to clear the scene.

"On two occasions, as cars came round a bend approaching the intersection, drivers braked suddenly and tried to do U or three-point turns on the corner to try and avoid the cordons putting themselves and potentially other drivers at risk.

"In both instances emergency services were alerted to the sound of rapidly applied brakes as drivers saw the vehicle in front of them suddenly stop and try and turn around so what we're asking for is for drivers to maintain their situational awareness and avoid having to make rash decisions."

Mrs Grace said another learning outcome was the importance of all road users, irrespective of whether they are drivers, riders or pedestrians to do all they can to ensure they can be seen and to keep themselves and other road users safe.

"Road safety is no accident and if we all take responsibility we can help one another make Waikato roads a safe place to work and travel and all get to where we are going safely."

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