Bicyclist killed in crash in McMinn Co. - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Bicyclist killed in crash in McMinn Co.

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ATHENS, TN (WRCB) -

A bicyclist was killed in McMinn County after reportedly veering into traffic on Highway 30 East just before 10 p.m. Monday night.

Witnesses told police that the bicyclist pulled into traffic and a driver in a red 99 Pontiac Grand Prix struck the victim near the intersection of Hughes Street. 

Officers took the driver into custody for driving with a suspended license. Investigators said the driver had his license suspended by the state for not paying child support. Eyewitnesses tell Channel 3 the driver appeared to be very remorseful. They said it appeared he didn't have much time to avoid the collision.

"I immediately grabbed my phone and called 911 and I was talking with the dispatcher... I couldn't help because I didn't know how to do CPR," said Eyewitness Marcus Miller.

The accident happened in front of the Arby's entrance on Decatur Pike. The victim who was hit, has been identified as John Allen hale, 33. Investigators said officers attempted CPR. Hale was later pronounced dead on the scene. According to the report, the driver who hit Hale, told police that he glanced for a split second to look at a truck passing in the left lane. When he looked back at the road, hale was in his path. Witnesses said the driver tried slamming on his breaks, but it was too late.

"We were gong approximately 35 miles per hour I mean we weren't going fast at all," said Miller. "I felt bad for both not just the driver and the cyclist the driver was visibly upset, you could tell he was tore up.

Another Driver who did not want to be identified told Channel 3 Eyewitness news that she saw the bicycle suddenly dart into the road in front of the vehicle beside her.

"It appeared to me that he had darted into the road and at that point I don't think the driver could react to the situation. I don't think it could have been avoided."


Police said hale wasn't wearing his helmet, Eyewitnesses said the bicycle had no lights or reflective gear

"I mean there's no light in that little section with the side street runs off," said Miller. "When it's dark in that section it's really dark."

Police said the driver is cooperating with the investigation. Immediately after the crash he agreed to take several blood tests.
Investigators said the results of those blood tests, including the result of the victim's blood test will determine if any additional charges are filed.

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