On Wednesday night around 10 o’clock, 23 year-old Justin LaValley was speeding on his motorcycle going westbound on Northwest Highway when he collided with a Hyundai turning left in front of him at Pickwick. The force of the impact sent the motorcycle flying through the air and over the brick retaining wall along Pickwick and Northwest Highway. Reports differ as to whether the motorcyclist hit the alley or was actually thrown into the garage of the nearby apartment building.
LaValley, only a few days shy of 24, died at the scene of the accident. The Hyundai driver only suffered minor injuries. Early investigation results suggest that the main factor in the deadly crash was the motorcycle’s dangerous speed.
Witness reports suggest that LaValley had run at least two-red lights on Northwest Highway at Boedecker and Hillcrest. What police investigators are unsure about is whether the left-turning Hyundai had a flashing yellow light, a green light or a red light.
This is not the first accident of its kind this week. Another young man in his early 20’s died while speeding on his motorcycle Tuesday night in Allen, Texas. Tyler Owens, 22, was speeding on Highway 121 when he caught the attention of highway patrol Trooper Lonny Haschel. The Trooper attempted to pull over Owens, who tried to out race the squad car. In Owens’ attempt to flee onto southbound Central Expressway, he lost control and hit the concrete wall of the ramp. The force of the crash sent him over the ramp to fall to his death 40 ft bellow. No one was hurt at ground level.
Motorcycles can be difficult for drivers to see at night, and motorcycles that are traveling at high speeds are even more vulnerable to driver error. Remember that even simple driving maneuvers can be dangerous when speeding.