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MIAMI(CBS4)—A bicyclist in his mid 20s was struck and killed while riding across the Julia Tuttle Causeway and the woman who struck him says she hit him by accident after another car cut her off.
Miami Fire Rescue Captain Ignatius Carroll told CBS4’s Peter D’Oench that the victim was either 24 or 25. Carroll said emergency crews discovered a backpack and a glove that was used by bicyclists.
Carroll said that backpack did have an identification card inside it with an age listed. But there was no address and the Florida Highway Patrol, which is in charge of the investigation, is trying to identify the victim.
Carroll said it was just after 11 p.m. Monday when Miami Fire Rescue was told about the 911 call and rushed to the scene to try to safe a life.
“That prompted us to respond with a fire boat and additional resources,” said Carroll.
When crews arrived they found a distraught driver in her car and learned that the bicyclist who had been hit in the eastbound lanes near the beginning of the bridge had gone into the water.
FHP identified the driver as 27-year-old Eltrisa McDaniel of Miami Gardens.
“We found two people in the car including the driver very traumatized,” said Carroll. He said the women were headed to work when the accident happened.
“Witnesses described seeing the backpack and a glove used by bicyclists,” he said. “Two people who were actually fishing described hearing a loud splash.”
“After some two hours of searching, we found the bicycle and they we found a male who was 24 or 25 about 20 feet away from where the incident occurred,” he said.
“As you are going eastbound and look at the Causeway from a distance, you see that it happened between the 2ND and 3rd light poles near the beginning of the bridge,” said Carroll. “That’s where the impact happened. It was a pretty severe impact that took the bicycle and the bicyclist over the bridge.”
“The driver said she was headed eastbound when a vehicle possibly cut her off and when she swerved to avoid the vehicle she struck the bicyclist,” Carroll said. “All she remembers is seeing the bicyclist on the side of the road and a vehicle headed towards her. After that everything went blank. That’s all she remembered.”
“Even though the streets were illuminated, it’s the fact that she did not have control of her vehicle and was trying to avoid another vehicle,” said Carroll. “That’s what they are looking into.”
It’s not known if McDaniel will be cited. Carroll said she was taken to Mt. Sinai Hospital on Miami Beach with minor injuries.