Bike rider fatally struck in Santa Rosa by dump truck; 3rd death in vicinity in 6 weeks
A woman on a bicycle was run over and killed on Stony Point Road at Highway 12 in west Santa Rosa on Tuesday afternoon, apparently after pedaling into the path of a loaded dump truck whose driver was unable to avoid a collision, police said.
The 12:25 p.m. crash occurred as the truck driver turned right onto southbound Stony Point Road near the Joe Rodota Trail after leaving eastbound Highway 12, authorities said.
Witnesses told police the driver, Sonoma resident Donald Parisi, had waited on the off-ramp for the light to turn green and then waited more for a pedestrian to clear the east-west crosswalk before starting his turn, Sgt. Chad Heiser said.
But Parisi, 58, said he never saw the cyclist until she was directly in his path as he turned south, Heiser said. It remained unclear Tuesday night from which direction she had come, though it appeared she was trying to go east across the street, police said.
The woman was struck in or near the crosswalk. She was run over and then became pinned under the right rear tires of the 10-wheeled truck, which was loaded with thousands of pounds of dirt, police said.
She was pronounced dead at the scene. The buckled cream-colored cruiser she was riding lay on the curb near a lone white Converse low-top sneaker.
Police were withholding her name and other identifying information, pending notification of family members, Heiser said.
A Sonoma County Coroner’s Office spokeswoman said her name would likely be made public Wednesday.
The Tuesday afternoon crash marked the third time in just more than six weeks that tragedy has visited the busy intersection, an area where Stony Point Road cuts across numerous east-west routes including Highway 12, Occidental Road, Third Street, Sebastopol Road and the well-traveled Joe Rodota Trail. There also are several shopping centers on the north and south sides of the highway, as well as the on- and off-ramps and numerous crosswalks.
“It’s a high traffic area,” Heiser said. “There’s lots of pedestrian and bicyclists due to the Joe Rodota Trail. We’ve had some bad luck lately.”
The cyclist’s death came a week behind a fatal pedestrian accident on the north side of the highway at Occidental Road, where a woman walking across Stony Point Road was struck in the northbound lane by a Chevy pickup, police said.
The woman, Jennell Marie Davies, 39, was in the crosswalk, police said, but it was after 9:45 p.m. and dark out, though the area was lit by streetlights.
Witnesses said the pickup driver had a green light and the right of way, and stayed at the scene to talk with police.
It was the eighth pedestrian crash in or near that intersection since May 2014 and the second since the night of Sept. 15, when a man was struck in the westbound lane of Occidental Road just west of Stony Point Road by two motorists in quick succession, both of whom drove away, police said. They have not been identified.
The victim in that case, Mathew Thomas Eck, 37, was dragged several hundred feet by the second vehicle and died at the scene.
Tuesday’s collision required closure of southbound Stony Point Road across the highway for more than 4½ hours and snarled traffic even longer into the afternoon. The backup contributed to two unrelated, non-injury crashes on Stony Point Road, as well, Heiser said.
Investigators are asking that any witnesses to Tuesday’s call Officer Ken Ferrigno in the Traffic Bureau at 707-543-3636.
You can reach Staff Writer Mary Callahan at 707-521-5249 or email@example.com or Staff Writer Randi Rossmann at 707‑521-5412 or firstname.lastname@example.org.