Outrage after dangerous speed bump puts well-known Toronto cyclist in hospital
Toronto's cycling community is showing support for a cyclist who was seriously injured last Thursday, and anger over the infrastructure they claim is responsible for his injuries.
Eli Cruz Lopez, a prolific Toronto cyclist who logged 1,474 kilometres on his bike in September alone, collided with a speed bump along the Bloor Street cycle tracks near Ellis Park Road on Thursday, in conditions that have triggered outrage from the cycling community.
Lopez was hospitalized with a broken pelvis and ribs after colliding with a recently-installed speed bump at the edge of the Bloor Street cycling track.
ActiveTO's infrastructure wasn't meant to actively injure cyclists!— prof of logic (U of Science) (@meh_just_a_guy) September 20, 2022
imagine wasting tax dollars to make streets more dangerous
It's argued that the new speed bump's low profile and positioning are to blame for the cyclist's injuries, with one tweet visualizing and explaining the issue that traffic entering the intersection forces bikes towards the speed bump, a problem that will likely only grow worse when the first dusting of snow arrives.
This is the speed bump that took out Eli Cruz Lopez it is on Bloor st and Ellis pk Rd at the bottom of a hill. As can be seen cars force bikes towards the bump. It is very dangerous and will be even more dangerous when covered in snow. The should be removed #BikeTO @CycleToronto pic.twitter.com/1y5Ee8YJFM— Mike Whitla (@WhitlaMike) September 20, 2022
"Serious safety hazard, needs immediate removal," reads one comment on Twitter, adding that "No cycle infrastructure should EVER be so low to the ground without a large wide upright reflective indicator to warn well in advance."
Also please be aware of these new rubber “bumps” that are hard to see and if hit sideways can cause serious injury!— Anthony Smith (@HealthyCityMaps) September 19, 2022
Especially hard to see in early morning when many recreational cyclists do laps around #HighPark in the dark before anyone else is in the area. pic.twitter.com/gTyqf0Jx8p
Along with outrage over the infrastructure, the incident has triggered an outpouring of generosity through a GoFundMe campaign.
Our friend & prolific cyclist, had a serious crash on Thursday when he hit a new rubber bump on Bloor. He broke his ribs/pelvis as well as his bike. Please contribute to aid his recovery. #bikeTO @CurbsideCycle @CycleToronto @BikeLawCanada @TheBikingLawyer https://t.co/pLpB3UmT9p— Anthony Smith (@HealthyCityMaps) September 19, 2022
The campaign has already surpassed its $20,000 goal to support Lopez and his recovery through the generosity of donors, with one anonymous donor even contributing $4,000 towards the fundraiser.
A representative of the city tells blogTO that the speed bump is the result of "feedback on conflicts between people cycling and turning vehicles."
"The project goals are to minimize cyclists exposure to conflicts with turning vehicles, reduce vehicle speeds and conflict points, communicate right-of-way priority and provide adequate sight distance."
"The intersection of Ellis Park Road and Bloor Street received public feedback since the bikeway was installed that there were remaining conflicts between people cycling and turning vehicles."
"The speed hump on Ellis Park Rd in the bike lane buffer was installed to slow drivers turning right and left from Bloor. Prior to its installation, a 'near miss' conflict analysis was conducted. It showed that for every 1000 eastbound cyclists, there was 7.3 near misses at an average vehicle speed of 15.1 km/h for right-turning vehicles and 20.2 near misses at an average speed of 17.3 km/hr."
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