crime

Truck driver arrested over fatal hit-and-run of cyclist in tunnel

19 Comments

A 23-year-old truck driver has been arrested on suspicion of hit-and-run after he hit and killed a 47-year-old cyclist in a tunnel in Nanto City, Toyama Prefecture. 

According to police, the incident occurred at around 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sankei Shimbun reported. The victim, Mitsuteru Oshita, was riding his bike through the tunnel when he was hit from behind by a truck driven by Yuto Kishimoto. Oshita was found lying next to his wrecked bicycle. 

Fragments of Oshita’s truck were found at the scene. Police said surveillance camera footage outside the tunnel helped to identify the truck.

Police said Kishimoto has admitted to the charge and quoted him as saying: “I panicked and kept going.”

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19 Comments
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I know I have said Japan is a great, safe place to cycle in but when I cycle through a tunnel, unless it is a really short mountain tunnel with no traffic, I always get off my bike in tunnels and walk along the raised edge.

If an on coming car is a bit too close to the center line a vehicle coming from behind will be forced to move left making tunnels extremely dangerous.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

We went through 11 tunnels in a row in Hokkaido, some were 2+ clicks long. Total distance must been well over 10km. Walking is not an options sometimes.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

....and not all tunnels have a walkway....

15 ( +15 / -0 )

A 23-year-old hit and killed a 47-year-old cyclist ,, Although it's been said, many times, many ways…. watch out for those dangerous reckless loony lorry drivers in those tunnels.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Another cyclist killed by another driver, the carnage continues. RIP.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I skip tunnels at all cost when I'm riding. I rather go to the closest station and hop into a train to skip them. They scare the poop out of me as I've already had a close call in one of them.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

We do not know the circumstances, but RIP.

For roadies, my advice is to plan your route and avoid tunnels wherever possible. Especially avoid uphill tunnels where you'll be going way slower than the traffic and they'll be upon you in no time.

Do not trust "model routes" produced by local governments and tourism people, because they may include avoidable tunnels. Nagano's do, including a high publicized route they produced last year. Do not expect local governments to signpost roads that bypass tunnels either. What you can do is look at Strava's global heatmap to see where other cyclists actually ride.

Bright coloured gear is great most of the time, but long tunnels are dark enough for it to not matter. What you need are lights and reflectors. Tunnels mean you may suddenly need lights even when riding on bright sunny days.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

 “I panicked and kept going.”

The act of a true coward! The cyclist might have survived if the coward had stopped and rendered assistance.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I will never understand why so many tunnels don't even have 1-meter-wide walkways on the sides. As if automobile drivers are all that matters, and pedestrians and cyclists don't even exist.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

GarthgoyleToday  10:09 am JST

I skip tunnels at all cost when I'm riding.

Same.

kohakuebisuToday  10:29 am JST

We do not know the circumstances, but RIP.

For roadies, my advice is to plan your route and avoid tunnels wherever possible. 

This is literally the only advice that can be given..... don't enter tunnels at all. But of course they can't be avoided at times, and if that's the case, stop and wait for a break in the traffic and make sure you're able to get through a quickly and safely as possible before vehicles catch up.

The thing that worries me in tunnels is the sound. The echoes make it impossible to hear how fast a car is closing in behind you. The only positive I can think of in a tunnel is the great splistreaming effect you can use to help you get out of there quicker.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

We went through 11 tunnels in a row in Hokkaido, some were 2+ clicks long. Total distance must been well over 10km. Walking is not an options sometimes.

Long tunnels have pavements for pedestrians and cyclists. I suggest you use them.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

As someone who cycles a lot, I am very afraid of tunnels, especially if a large truck is coming up behind you. Here's the thing, even if you're a good distance away from cars, the wind that they generate can still throw you off. I've had my close shaves with truck drivers before. I agree with Bungle, walk your bike instead.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Most of the long tunnels are from the 1970s or later, so they will usually be another route joining where you've been and where you are going. It will not necessarily start from near the tunnel entrance and may be a completely different route. Since tunnels go through hills and mountains, avoiding them means going up, around and over. It'll probably be much nicer road but this means more climbing and even more reason to set your bike up for uphills with low gearing.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Anyone know the tunnel between Meguro and Hiro station s - used to blitz that bad boy like an alley cat

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I use lots of tunnels in my car.

i can’t understand why Japanese engineers don’t make two car lanes and another raised lane for bicycles and emergency circles. The extra cost would be very minimal.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Goodlucktoyou

I use lots of tunnels in my car. *

i can’t understand why Japanese engineers don’t make two car lanes and another raised lane for bicycles and emergency circles. The extra cost would be very minimal. You will make a great traffic engineer and city planner.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Didn't even stop to render aid or call an ambulance. Panicked or not, you should have stopped and done something. Throw the book at this guy. Too many of these types driving on the streets but he'll probably get a suspended sentence. Tragic.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

i can’t understand why Japanese engineers don’t make two car lanes and another raised lane for bicycles and emergency circles. The extra cost would be very minimal.

Perhaps it was the tunnel boring technology of the time. And, as we can see from our roads today, no planner even now ever seems to expect street traffic to become as dense as it has, and as ever more dense it will become. And then there's the guy on the planning commission who argues over every single yen of costs that do not flow in the 'right' direction. We see him all over our failing infrastructure in America...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

He was caught and panicked.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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