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The Indiana Daily Student

bloomington little 500

3 Little 500 cyclists hit by cars in three days this week


Three Little 500 cyclists have been hit by cars in three separate crashes this week causing non-life-threatening injuries to bikers on the Greek teams Beta Sigma Psi, Phi Mu and Phi Kappa Psi. All three crashes occurred in a span of just three days.

On Aug. 21 Beta Sigma Psi rider, sophomore Conor Furlong, was hit by a car on 2nd and High Street just after 2 p.m. Furlong received several broken fingers and a contusion in his quad but is otherwise doing well, according to IU senior and Beta Sigma Psi bike captain Michael Dubois.

“He’ll be back soon, I just told him to take his time to recover mentally and physically, there is no need to rush back,” Dubois said. “At the end of the day, we train for a charity bike race, so we don’t want anything bad to happen.”

Furlong created a Go Fund Me page to raise money for a new bike. According to the page, Furlong broke both of his hands, as well as his new bike. As of Friday night, the page had raised more than $1,000.

“It took me a lot of hard work to buy my last bike and it sucks that I lost it,” the page reads. “It has been hard to deal with mentally and hope I can get back out there on a clean slate.”

The second crash took place on Aug. 22 on North David Baker Avenue, injuring a sophomore Phi Mu rider. The vehicle involved left the scene before the officers arrived. The driver was later located and admitted to leaving the scene, according to IUPD.

The driver faces a charge of leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious bodily injury. The Monroe County Prosecutor's Office will handle the case.

Phi Mu bike team captain, IU senior Aysa Streeval, said she does not feel safe biking on campus and tries to avoid riding in busy areas. However, she said this isn’t possible for riders living in Greek houses.

“I want to, on behalf of our team, extend that we’re sad that this happened to two other teams,” Streeval said. “It really sucks for everyone involved. Drivers and pedestrians need to be way more aware of each other.”

[Related: Recent changes around IUB’s campus that all students should know about]

IUPD responded to a third crash at 4:15 p.m. on Aug. 23 on Law Lane. The driver traveling east on Law Lane struck Phi Kappa Psi rider and sophomore Hunter Jones, who was biking in the opposite direction. The driver stated they did not see Jones until they made the turn, according to IUPD.

Jones was left with three cracked ribs, a pneumothorax (a hole in his lung), a chipped tooth, eight stitches in his elbow and a concussion.  

Phi Kappa Psi bike team captain, senior Kaleb Cooper, said Jones should be cleared to ride again in a week or two, but the team won’t be putting any pressure on him to do so until he is ready.

“I want everyone to be extra cautious when they’re driving around campus,” Cooper said. “I know it’s easy to zone out or be changing your music, but try not to be distracted while driving. Try to be careful because there are a lot of pedestrians and riders so it can be dangerous and scary.”

IUPD officer Hannah Skibba said students will see an increase in officers on campus stopping both cars and cyclists who aren’t properly following traffic laws to give warnings. Skibba said they are focusing on education for drivers and riders rather than issuing tickets.

“Ultimately we need students to step up and really voice their concerns on that kind of stuff because that’s how we’re going to make changes moving forward,” Skibba said.

Little 500 Race Director Emily Carrico sent a message over email to the Little 500 community encouraging all teams and their non-Little 500 communities to have discussions on how everyone can make the IU campus safer for all forms of transportation.

Refer to this IU Today article to for more tips on traveling safely on campus.

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