Crime

More about the cyclist killed on Belair Rd; looking into bike laws

EVANS, Ga. (WJBF) - It was 5:00 pm Monday when cyclist, Anthony Crisler, was hit by a car. The driver was turning left out of a daycare center during peak traffic hour. 

NewsChannel 6's Samantha Williams went to the bike shop Crisler frequented, and the owner said tragedies like this need to end: "I just saw him a couple of weeks ago. He had his bike serviced here."

Anthony Crisler, a long-time customer of Chain Reaction Cycling, was in a center lane on Belair Road Monday when he lost his life. Columbia County Deputies say Michele Edelmann was turning left out of Small Wonders Daycare when her SUV hit Crisler head on. 

She is charged with failure to yield and 2nd degree vehicular homicide. 

"If there is an incident with a cyclist and vehicle, the cyclist always loses... no matter who is at fault," Cohen said. 

In Georgia, a bicycle is legally a "vehicle," meaning vehicle traffic laws apply to cyclists.

"It comes down to visibility," Cohen explained. "Motorists need to pay attention, and cyclists certainly need to do everything they can do to be visible."

Staff Sergeant Ray Childress told us the number one rule while biking on the road: Stay as far right as possible. 

"You need to be just paying attention to what is going on around you, especially when you are in heavy traffic," SSG Childress said. 

But cyclists aren't the only ones who need to watch out on Belair Road. Gina Vinson told us the exact scenario happened to her, except she was in her car. 

"I was in the suicide lane, the center lane. Someone came out of the daycare, turned left into bumper to bumper traffic, and hit me head on," Vinson explained. 

She said there is always a lot of traffic on that road, and it doesn't help that drivers constantly speed down it. She wants to see more traffic control: "I almost always have to make a right hand turn if I am going to go left."

The Columbia County Sheriff's Office said the investigation is pending.

Count on us to keep you updated. 


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