Gothamist claims video shows Citi Bike cyclist not at fault in fatal crash

On Wednesday, we reported on the death of Dan Hanegby, a 36-year-old investment banker who is the first-ever cyclist to die while using one of New York City’s Citi Bike bike-share bicycles after he was struck by a city bus on Monday.

At the time, The New York Times reported that, per the City of New York Police Department (NYPD), Hanegby had swerved to get around a van and rode his bike into the way of the city bus.

citi bike crash new york city cycling
Dan Hanegby is the first-ever recorded fatality for a Citi Bike cyclist. Photo: Courtesy of NYCDOT/Flickr

However, on Thursday, Gothamist published a report contradicting the NYPD’s account of the fatal incident, saying it had viewed video of the incident that showed Hanegby maintaining a straight line of travel in the bike lane before being clipped by the city bus.

From Gothamist’s story:

Hanegby … appears to be traveling in a straight trajectory near the middle of the roadway. He briefly glances to the right in the direction of three people grouped on the sidewalk, then turns his head straight again as he passes the parked van. At that moment, the bus driver passes him. Hanegby’s front wheel can be seen jerking to the right just before he passes out of view of the camera, behind the parked van. Viewing the video in slow motion, it appears the bus’s wheel well clipped Hanegby’s handlebars, causing the front wheel to twist right … Hanegby does not swerve. When the bus clips his bike, he can be seen falling down to the street. The bus driver runs over Hanegby’s torso with the bus’s right rear passenger tires, and continues partway down the block before coming to a stop.

Gothamist said it published its report because, in the past year, there have been multiple incidents in which cyclists within New York City have died, only to have their final moments inaccurately reported.

As reported by Streetsblog NYC Thursday, the NYPD decided to not charge the bus driver who struck Hanegby in the fatal accident, and instead blamed Hanegby for causing the accident.

One passenger aboard the bus that struck Hanegby confirmed to Gothamist her belief that the bus driver was at fault in the accident.

“We brushed [Hanegby] causing him to loose [sic] control,” the passenger wrote in an email. “I was in the front seat of this bus and witnessed it. He was ahead of us and the driver may have felt that he had enough room to proceed … He most likely lost control because the bus was inches away. My heart breaks for this man and his family.”

Hanegby’s family lamented the inaccurate reporting of his death in a statement to Gothamist.

“This awful tragedy has been made more painful by inaccurate descriptions of the occurrence in certain rushed media reports,” the Hanegby family said in a statement to Gothamist. “In fact, Dan was an experienced cyclist, and when all of the evidence comes out, we are confident that the responsible parties will be held accountable.”

H/T Gothamist

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