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Cyclist Badly Hurt by Vehicle

Witnesses gave conflicting statements as to whether the victim was riding his bike or walking it in the crosswalk, according to Napa police.

 

A Napa man was in critical condition at after he was struck by a vehicle Thursday afternoon while riding his bicycle on Jefferson Street, police said.

At about 1:35 p.m., police found Jose Garcia, 39, unconscious in the first northbound lane of Jefferson Street, about 40 feet north of the H Street intersection, Sgt. Paul Paniagua said.

Garcia was hospitalized with internal head injuries, a fractured hip and abrasions, Paniagua said.

The driver of the vehicle, 70-year-old Steven Cirimele of Benicia, was interviewed at the scene, Paniagua said.

Witnesses gave conflicting statements as to whether Garcia was riding his bike or walking it in the crosswalk, Paniagua said.

Jefferson 
Street was closed for about two hours while the Napa Police Department Accident Reconstruction Team photographed and gathered evidence.

Alcohol did not appear to be a factor in the collision, according to police.

Anyone with information is asked to call Officer Gregg Lee at (707) 257-9223.

Bay City News Service contributed to this report.

Michael Haley December 10, 2011 at 01:33 AM
Earlier today before I read this story I was driving down Jefferson right there. There was mass confusion around that crosswalk in part because so many walkers were crossing over without really looking to see if the traffic had noticed them. I was in the left lane with a big truck in front of me, an SUV passed me on the right and almost slammed into someone walking across that they couldnt' see due to the truck in the left lane blocking their view. My point is that I thought the walkers need to make sure cars can see them before they just walk out there without looking.
Louisa Hufstader December 10, 2011 at 11:48 PM
Observed today: A new crosswalk on Permanente Way has a button that activates flashing lights embedded in the crosswalk and a recorded voice warning in two languages that drivers might not stop while you are crossing.
sherrell harper December 11, 2011 at 06:08 AM
I unfortunately witnessed this horrible accident. The driver's view was blocked by a car previously stopped.. and the cyclist was riding rather than walking which gave less time to look. So blame is not the problem. Driver's should always stop or at least slow and look carefully if they see another car stopped. And cyclists should carefully look around stopped cars and not assume everybody can see them. My biggest concern is this young man -- and any family he may have. What a terrible event for Christmas. Does he have kids, wife, dogs/cats, not being taken care off? Do they need help? How do we find out if he has anybody there to support him? Can we, as Napkins, step up to help that family? What a tragedy.
Louisa Hufstader December 13, 2011 at 02:39 AM
Hi, Sherrell. Those are very compassionate thoughts and I would refer you to the folks at the Queen, where his condition has been upgraded to serious: http://patch.com/A-py8Y. Vanessa at the Queen couldn't say more because of patient privacy concerns, but I am sure she could find a way to pass on offers of assistance from caring Napans like you. On another note, have you let Napa PD know what you saw? They have been telling reporters that because of his injuries, they believe he was walking his bicycle in the crosswalk, as the law requires.

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