Cyclist killed by truck in downtown Minneapolisby Elizabeth Baier, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul — A bicyclist was killed early Wednesday morning near downtown Minneapolis after being crushed by a tractor trailer hauling concrete and asphalt, police said.
The accident occurred around 7:40 a.m. at the intersection of 14th Street East and Park Avenue South, according to Minneapolis Police Sgt. Bill Palmer.
Both vehicles were traveling north on Park Avenue when the accident occurred. The truck driver hit the bicyclist while trying to make a left turn onto 14th Street, Palmer said.
The bicyclist was crushed by the truck and died at the scene, officials said.
Police said the victim was an adult male. They did not release his identity or other details of the accident.
Earlier this morning, police blocked the area to reconstruct the accident and question the truck driver, who was later released without a citation, Palmer said. Both streets reopened by midmorning.
Park Avenue South is a one-way, northbound street frequently used by early morning bicycle commuters. Officials are urging motorists to drive carefully as the weather warms up and more bicyclists return to the roads.
In 2008, 13 bicyclists were killed on Minnesota roads --- the most since 14 bicyclists were killed in 2000, and a significant increase over the four killed in 2007.
State transportation officials say the increase in bicycle commuters was a factor in the increase in deaths last year.
Officials advise both motorists and bicyclists to bear responsibility for safety on the roads--bicyclists are responsible for paying attention to traffic control devices like stoplights and stop signs, while motorists must not drive inattentively and fail to see bicyclists.
Officials say the biggest factor in bicyclist-motorist crashes is failure to yield the right of way.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
An earlier version of this story named the wrong location because of incorrect information provided by a source.