If you drive west of St. Louis for about four and a half hours, you will come to Peculiar, Missouri. The town of less than 5,000 recently made headlines when a bicyclist there was struck by a SUV driven by a local police officer. Fortunately, the bicyclist apparently sustained only minor injuries in the collision.
The distracted driving crash was captured on video by the bicyclist and posted on YouTube. It has already been viewed more than a million times, according to an article in USA Today.
The bicyclist was apparently wearing a camera on his helmet. The video shows him coming to a stop at a rural intersection and waiting for vehicles to pass. You can see the white Peculiar police vehicle approach and then make a left-hand turn – right into the bicyclist.
As the officer pulls over and begins walking over to the bicyclist, he’s asked why he was texting while driving. “I wasn’t texting,” the officer says. “I was looking at my phone.”
“Either way,” the bicyclist replies.
“Yeah, I know. It was my bad,” the officer says. A moment later he concedes, “I wasn’t paying attention.”
While the officer is to be commended for his honesty, it is nevertheless surprising that a trained patrol officer would be so careless. He has been suspended with pay, USA Today reports, while the Missouri State Highway Patrol investigates the crash.
In this particular incident, both the officer and bicyclist can be grateful that there were no serious injuries. It should be noted, however, that some injuries are not immediately apparent. The bicyclist said at the end of the video that he was going to be examined by a doctor “within a day or two.”
Those who have been hurt in wrecks caused by distracted drivers should get immediate medical attention. You can later discuss compensation for all damages with a lawyer experienced in personal injury litigation.