Three bicyclists lost their lives in two separate Elkhart County crashes this morning.
“It’s just very tragic and unfortunate,” said Undersheriff Sean Holmes with the Elkhart County Sheriff’s department.
One accident killed a 60-year old man, while the other took the lives of two teenagers. Both accidents took place before sunrise, which today, was 6:11 a.m.
The first collision took place at 3:35 a.m. on County Road 17 at the US 20 Bypass bridge. A car and a bike that were traveling in the same direction collided, killing the man on the bike, 60 year old Ramundo Macjado Sabad of Elkhart.
Police believe that Sabad was riding to work when the hit and run accident occurred.
“They did leave the scene, that is a crime and we are going to investigate, try and locate the driver the minute we have something the public can help on, we’ll definitely ask for it, and then release that information,” said Undersheriff Holmes.
Later in the day, the department announced that it had located a suspect vehicle believed to have been involved in the accident.
Some two and a half hours after the first accident, but still some 20 minutes before sunrise, two teens were killed while riding bikes on County Road 20 near the U.S. 20 Bypass bridge.
Both victims were on bikes that were struck by a car that was traveling in the opposite direction.
The victims have been identified as 18 year old David Anglemyer and 19 year old Daniel Runion, both of Goshen.
The driver of the car has not been cited for the crash.
While police can’t say exactly how the accidents occurred, the fact that they occurred was enough to unnerve some in the cycling community. “Some people will try to put blame somewhere or another, at this stage that really doesn't matter, but I think what we need to learn from it is just that cyclists, motorists have to be aware there's a lot of people riding bike (bikes),” said Mark Gingerich of Family Bicycle Center in Elkhart.
Police say it’s legal to ride a bike any time of day, although the rules change from one half hour after sunset, to one half hour before sunrise. That’s when riders need a front lamp that is visible from at least 500 feet, and a rear red light visible from a distance of at least 500 feet.