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Ron Mierau is recovering from serious injuries resulting from being hit by an SUV in Victoria on Oct. 1, the first day of ICBC’s Pedestrian Awareness Month.
An avid and experienced cyclist, Mierau and his wife, Heidi, were riding back to their Fairfield home when the crash occurred.
He had just hit the button for the light at the intersection at Richardson and Cook streets, and then proceeded when the light turned green.
“We started going through, and the next thing I remember is five and half hours later, and I was in the hallway of the Victoria General Hospital,” Mierau told CHEK News on Friday.
The driver of the SUV blew through the red light, T-boning Mierau, crushing his bike, and very nearly killing him.
“We did everything right. It was green. He wasn’t even in our, our peripheral vision,” said Mierau. “It was like he wasn’t even there. And he admitted he was doing 50 km/h right through the light. I’m just lucky this is all I got.”
Right behind him, Heidi couldn’t do anything but watch in horror.
“I just saw him fly up into the air overtop of the car, and land quite a significant distance away,” she said. “And then when I got over to him, there was so much blood coming out of his nose, and his mouth, and he was making this gurgling noise.”
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She managed to flag down an ambulance that just happened to be driving by.
“I thought it was catastrophic what was happening. I wasn’t sure if he was going to live or not,” Heidi said.
And Mierau isn’t the only victim.
On Oct. 10, just 10 days into Pedestrian Awareness Month, a driver struck a pedestrian walking in a marked crosswalk at Jutland Road and Cecelia Road in Victoria.
The city is planning to install a controlled light there. But for now, pedestrians have to watch before they walk.
As for the drivers who cause crashes like these, Const. Terri Healy with Victoria Police says they could walk away with as little as a violation ticket and a $147 fine, depending on the circumstances leading up to the incident.
“It could be a motor vehicle act offence, and that’s a violation ticket, all the way up to a criminal code charge for dangerous driving,” Healy said.
The extent of the punishment for the driver who hit Mierau has yet to be determined.
But Mierau’s future is clear.
He is facing months of rehabilitation and recovery before he can get back on his bike.