$12.5 million verdict in cyclist death

I followed this story a bit, as I lived in Thousand Oaks for many years.

Glenn Garvin was not just a dentist and cyclist. He was very active in promoting bicycle safety for the City of Thousand Oaks. So it’s horribly ironic that he was struck and killed by a motorist while riding his bike in the bike lane. The motorist that struck him accepted responsibility after admitting that she had been advised she had cataracts a month before the accident.

That’s a hefty verdict, one unlikely to be paid in full. But there is no amount of money that can replace a passionate cycling advocate. It’s a loss for his family, the city, and the cycling community at large.

I only wish there was a way some good could come from this.

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When Glenn died, the TO city council formed a Bicycle Advisory Team to review bicycle safety in TO. The team studied the Garvin accident in particular, and all TO bike accidents in general; its recommendations were accepted by the city in full. Recommendations included sharrows for TO Blvd, elimination of door-zone bike lanes, updated “Share the road – cyclist may use full lane” signage for roads with narrow outside lanes, outreach program to reduce sidewalk/wrong way cycling, adding a cycling advocate to TO city staff, amongst others – the full set of recommendations is at http://www.toaks.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10777 and http://www.toaks.org/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=10778 .

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