On the evening of Saturday, June 1, a 65-year-old man was cycling along the Washington and Old Dominion Trail—a trail typically reserved for pedestrians and bicyclists—when a car on the trail struck him at approximately 8:30 p.m.
The car, a 2005 Toyota driven by 28-year-old Mehak Chopra of McLean, Virginia had been traveling at a high rate of speed for nearly five miles when she hit the cyclist and continued down the trail without slowing down. The cyclist was thrown off of his bike and onto the shoulder of the trail. Hospitalized and cited as suffering serious (but non-life-threatening) injuries, the cyclist has not yet been named.
Fairfax County police caught up with Chopra after she made a left turn onto Maple Avenue in the town of Vienna. They had received several calls from pedestrians on the trail who had to jump out of the car’s way to avoid being hit.
Residents and businesses along the Washington and Old Dominion Trail are dismayed that the incident happened but have seen several cars mistakenly turn onto portions of the trail where there are not barriers to prevent car entry. Some are shocked that more people have not been hurt in car/bicycle and car/pedestrian accidents at these locations.
Chopra was later charged with a felony hit-and-run and driving while intoxicated.
The Maryland, Washington, DC, and northern Virginia bicycle accident lawyers of Lewis & Tompkins would like to extend their best wishes for a speedy recovery to the cyclist who was injured.