An OB Mom and 2-Year Old on Bike Injured by Suspected DUI Driver

by on December 2, 2012 · 8 comments

in Ocean Beach

Just before noon on Saturday, December 1st, a woman and her two-year old were injured by a suspected DUI driver while they were bicycling through the intersection of West Point Loma and Sunset Cliffs Blvd.  The small child had his leg broken due to the accident and was transported to the hospital for treatment.

Bystanders say the child’s helmet and bike seat probably saved its life.  An older woman – suspected of being DUI – was arrested for felony drunk driving – but not yet identified.

San Diego Police officer Matt Gagliardi said:

 “A vehicle hit a bicyclist with a child breaking the child’s leg. The driver was arrested for felony drunken driving.”

A good Samaritan and first responder said that :

“[It’s of] extreme importance of the fact that his child seat & helmet saved his life. period. he would otherwise have been killed on the spot. his mother is to be commended for taking proper safety measures!”


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Larry OB December 2, 2012 at 11:16 am

Several news reports say it happened “at” the intersection. This OB Rag version has it happening “while they were bicycling through the intersection.” The truth is that it happened “near” the intersection. The car came to a stop in front of the house just West of the sporting goods store, and that’s the 3rd property away from the intersection. The collision occured in a non lane where cars park, and not in one of the two actual traffic lanes. She was riding her bicycle in what is normally a safe part of the street, but got rear ended. The channel 7 website has a photo of the car and bike (slightly moved) and it’s clearly neither “in” or “at” the intersection. Also note the dent on the hood of the car.


Larry OB December 2, 2012 at 11:27 am

This wouldn’t have happened if people were allowed to bike on the sidewalk. Handicapped people are allowed to ride two-wheeled vehicles on the sidewalk, and I think normal people should enjoy the same rights. Pehaps we need a show of civil disobedience, like a weekend day where all of the bike riders in the city get up and ride on the sidewalk.


Sarah December 5, 2012 at 8:21 am

I totally agree about bikes being allowed on the sidewalk. I am a mom of a 2 year old and frequently bike around. I get so nervous, especially on weekends when it is more likely for people to be intoxicated.


John December 11, 2012 at 8:22 am

Maybe this particular incident would have been avoided but overall on this issue the stats don’t support any concept that riding on a sidewalk is safer for the bicycle.
It’s most glaring in the situation of a car turning right while the bicycle is continuing on ahead. Having the bicycle on the sidewalk puts him out of the driver’s field of view until it’s too late, he enters the intersection right as the car turns and runs him over.
Don’t believe me, look it up, many studies have been done on this. Never mind the danger to pedestrians.
The rules of the road have been carefully considered up to this point, don’t think such a radical change would not be without consequences.
Funny, on that very same stretch of W. Pt. Loma, on the opposite side, for about a block there is a row of homes and apartments, some with hedges and fences right on the sidewalk.
How safe will your sidewalk cyclist be when residents try to pull out of their driveway and can’t possibly see the cyclist whizzing by?
I ride daily, and there are only several places in the area I find it appropriate to get off the street and on the sidewalk- any time I have to be on Sunset Cliffs, between W. Pt Loma and at Point Loma ave, which will not be more than one block. If I approach a pedestrian I dismount.
W. Pt. Loma in front of the old Longs/horrible tiny new CVS (what a rat hole BTW!) drugstore, either direction. I was nudged into the tailgate of a parked pickup by an impatient driver going westbound there about 6 years ago and nearly killed when I fell into the traffic lane. He didn’t stop, luckily the guy behind him (and me) did.

***Plug for Roger: Bernie’s straightened my fully taco’d front rim for just $6!!! Yay! ***

Anywhere on Midway between W. Pt. Loma and Rosecrans- though again like Sunset Cliffs there is no reason to even be on it to pass through.
All the above merely because drivers are focused on getting through and you are an obstacle, and the street is rough and narrow.

Not to “blame the victim” but I’m curious where this woman was headed. As I said I ride every day and I live on W. Pt. Loma. I would avoid that block she was on, especially westbound. (opposite her direction of travel) If she was headed towards mission beach or sea world, take the channel bike path. If she was headed east, there is Lotus, go right at Sunset Cliffs and immediate left up the alley behind Shell then cut back over to W. Pt Loma, or even stay on Voltaire. (not the best thing, the light at Sunset Cliffs is brutally long AND WE DO stop at red lights though if you did that as Voltaire passes Guizot, the sidewalk thing becomes the thing to do)

Can anyone imagine putting bicycles on the sidewalk on Newport? GTFO! Especially since the most dangerous folks in all of this equation, IMO? Are many of the cyclists. You know the ones. Usually on a beach cruiser, maybe ape hangers, never a helmet, rarely a light at night, often riding on the wrong side of the road, NEVER stop at 4 ways, as often as not inebriated. OB is full of them. You guys need a ***** slap. Grow up.


Larry OB December 2, 2012 at 12:25 pm

There’s something else that hasn’t appeared in any media stories. The child screamed conitinuously, and continued to scream after being put in the emegency vehicle.

I’m curious to know more about the mother’s injuries. In several stories, the injuries were reported to be minor. I think she was pumped with adrenaline, and I wouldn’t be surprised if she can barely walk today. It all depends on what part of her body made the dent on the hood, and whether she also impacted the windshield. Nobody should poo poo this. It was a serious accident.

One more note. The right front tire of the car was flat. It wasn’t clear if it was the broken bicycle or the curb that blew the tire.


Frank Gormlie December 2, 2012 at 6:33 pm

Thanks Larry OB for these updates and clarifications.


unWASHEdWalmaRtthONG December 3, 2012 at 2:26 pm

This device will not help when you get rear-ended, but bikers could carry a police whistle on a lanyard. I carry a whistle when I ride my road bike. On Saturday I almost got clocked by a guy opening his car door into my path. Three shrill notes stopped him cold, & he gave me a couple of toots on his horn, which is better than a blast & the finger.
Hoping the baby is OK.


John December 11, 2012 at 7:50 am

a bell works great too.


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