Orange County claims yet another biking victim

Just days after a police crackdown on cyclists and drivers intended to reduce Orange County’s one-a-month rate of cycling deaths, another cyclist has been killed on the county’s streets.

According to Corona del Mar Today, a cyclist described only as a middle-aged man was hit and killed on San Joaquin Hills Road east of Spyglass Hill Road in Newport Beach around 6 pm Monday. The unidentified 22-year old suspected drunk driver was booked on suspicion of gross vehicular manslaughter, with bail set at $100,000. An earlier report placed the time of the collision at 5:59 pm; the rider was pronounced dead at the scene.

More details as they become available.

But here’s the problem.

Despite protestations from some quarters, bad bicyclist behavior does not cause bicycling deaths. Bad driving does.

Even a cursory examination of cyclists killed in Orange County recently suggests that the problem isn’t cyclists running stop signs, riding two abreast or even flipping off drivers, as obnoxious as that may be.

They died at the hands of drunk, high or careless drivers. Simply put, no crackdown on rider behavior would have done a damn thing to save the lives of Michael Nine, Donald Murphy or Alan Earl Miller.