FYI, Mary Shaw and Roy Weil are long-time trail advocates and authors of the original guide to the GAP "Linking Up: Planning Your Traffic-free Bicycle Trip between Pittsburgh PA and Washington DC." Below is from a mailing list about the Armstrong Trail.
On Saturday Aug 9 about 2 pm Roy and I were in Kittanning biking south on the Armstrong Trail in the cycle track beside Grant St. At Market St, we had a green light and started into the intersection. A car headed toward the river on Market St was not signalling a right turn but made a right hand turn into us, hit and dragged the bike (disabling the bike), and drove away without stopping. Fortunately we were not seriously hurt.
Please help us locate the driver. The license number I wrote down was Pennsylvania DTP 2784. The police say this comes up as a registration at the other end of the state, so it's probably off by a letter, or maybe two characters are interchanged. The car was a station wagon or SUV; I thought it was grayish, the witnesses say it was greenish. Witnesses say a woman was driving.
If you know a car like this with a similar license number that was in
Kittanning on Saturday afternoon, please ask the driver to contact the Kittanning police about their report on the Saturday afternoon bicycle accident and to contact us about repairs to the bike.
Thanks for any information you can provide.
Thank god it wasn't more serious....glad to know mary and roy are ok. Has anyone forwarded this to the Armstrong trail folks?
Amazing that the state police could/would not do a "fuzzy match" on a plate number.
@stu-in-mccandless Amazing that the state police could/would not do a “fuzzy match” on a plate number.
No it's not.
I had experience with the 9-1-1 in Pittsburgh where the dispatcher, when asked to read back a plate number, simply would not get it correct. In my opinion, it went way past the normal "wrote it down incorrectly."
If they feel the complaint is tivial (and after all, when is a biker's complaint NOT trivial?), they can always - and often do - come back and say the plate number doesn't match.
Sometimes it's easier not to protect and serve.
Jon, thanks for re-posting this here, and thanks all for your concern. The Armstrong Trail folks are aware of the incident.
Roy's wrist was twisted but he got his feet out of the way in time (it's a 'bent tandem trike), so no serious injury. The bike was not rideable, but one of the witnesses offered a ride to our car. Jerry Kraynick rounded up the parts we needed for temporary repairs and we got them just before he closed Saturday, then spent the evening cobbling things back together. We have an estimate for proper repairs.
Actually, the Kittanning Police are trying to find the driver. We got a followup message from the officer who took the report. He talked to one of the witnesses and got a more complete description. The State Police went to the home of the people who match the license number we wrote down, and it was clearly not the car. Kittanning has asked the State Police for a fuzzy match on the plate.
The incident # is KPD 08-14-089, in case anyone gets any new information. Kittanning Police phone is 724-543-1538.
It was handy to have a Bike Pgh accident report card handy; now we need a new one.
Roy Weil and Mary Shaw
I'm so glad neither of you was seriously hurt!
Hopefully they can catch & prosecute the driver.
Thank heaven you're both OK! I don't suppose any nearby businesses had a security camera pointed that way? Hope they identify the right car.
I am so glad you're both all right. It's your cat-like reflexes and all that good karma. i hope Roy heals fast.
I had the same experience with them not bothering to check a partial match on a guy who hit me. If it was a cop that got hit, you know they'd do the legwork to find the car. I don't know if it's a technical limitation (which is very possible, if the stupid DMV is any indication) or the cops are just lazy.
I can do wildcard searches for people at the community college where I work, so I don't know why the state can't do the same
Like I said, Kittanning has asked the State Police for a partial match.
Computers could do fuzzy matches back in the days of Hollerith card decks. I'm sure they've improved on the technology since then.
I was very pleased to encounter Mary and Roy on their twin bent on the trail Sunday afternoon.
We were happy to be out there, too. Roy's wrist has recovered. We were able to make temporary repairs right away, but the bike is still somewhat messed up -- we couldn't completely true the wheel, the steering is not as tight as it should be. The bike goes to the framebuilder (Michael Brown, MaestroCycles) tomorrow.
Following up on our incident in Kittanning on August 9: The Kittanning police got a fuzzy match on the license plate number I wrote down and talked to the witnesses. Based on this information, they are confident that they have identified the driver and they will be issuing multiple citations. The driver's insurance company has contacted us, and they are attempting to determine whether their client is indeed the driver; they assure us that they will pay for repairs if that is the case. Thank you all for your encouragement and support.
Good news! I like good news.
^"they will be issuing multiple citations"
I hope this driver learns from this - the outcome could have been much much worse - and thank god it didnt.
That is good news but it sounds like they deserve a lot more than a few citations. Hit and run is a misdemeanor at a minimum and having an injury involved is supposed to make it a felony.
Yay! Hooray for license plates. I hope they've identified the driver that struck you.
Followup on the Kittanning accident: On Aug 9 a driver made a right-on-red without checking to see whether someone with the green light was already using the intersection. She caused substantial damage to the trike and left the scene. We got a partial plate and filed a police report.
The reason for this message is that we just got a check from the driver's insurance company that covers the cost of repairs!!! The delay was mostly caused by delays in getting parts.
So thanks to Ofc Bussard of Kittanning Police for following up with the partial plate and witnesses. The driver told the insurance company she didn't hit anything, so the police report was essential.
Thanks for your support -- sometimes things work out!
This is good!
glad this kind of worked out.
Send the police officer some baked good for his/her good work. The next time they are involved in a bike case they will try just as hard.
@edronline -- even better, I cc'ed his Chief on my thank-you note.