MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A spot in the Twin Cities gets more bike traffic than any other in the state, and now it’s getting a safety makeover just a couple of months following a deadly crash.
University student Kimberly Hull was killed at 15th Avenue and Fourth Street Southeast. Roughly 3,500 bikes and 12,000 cars bolt through Dinkytown daily.
“My daughter was killed five months ago tomorrow by a fully loaded dump truck that didn’t see her while she was riding her bicycle and ran over and crushed her,” said her father Larry Hull.
She was heading to class down 15th Avenue Southeast. When the truck tried turning, she tried going straight through the intersection. Police say she was not wearing a helmet but was wearing headphones.
“Four out of six bike fatalities in the city of Minneapolis have involved turning trucks and bicycles, so this is a significant problem,” said City Council Member Cam Gordon.
The city has now continued the bike-lane through the intersection, marked with a bright green line that’s been etched into the street. The materials used will make it resistant to Minnesota’s severe weather conditions.
“I think it’ll actually help a lot, especially for drivers who may not know where the bike lanes are,” said student Emily Chen, who was biking Tuesday afternoon.
There are also new signals at the crosswalk that include countdown-timers. Bikers and walkers will now know how long they’ve got to cross safely.
“And we hope, as a result of this installation and future installations in the city, that there will be fewer accidents, fewer injuries and fewer deaths, so that other families will be spared the pain that we carry in our hearts forever,” said Hull’s father.
Heartbreak for his own loss, he has hope for the future of bike safety in Minneapolis.
Her parents are passionate about bike safety and making sure no other parent has to deal with losing their child like they did.