8/27/20 Ambulance

An ambulance arrives on the scene of a bike accident on Thursday at the intersection of State Street and River Road.

Following the arrival of students to campus at the beginning of the school year has been an influx of pedestrian and vehicle crashes, with roughly a half-dozen reported to area police departments last week.

On Wednesday, a student riding an electric skateboard was struck by a turning car at the intersection of Grant Street and State Street, according to reports from Officer Kyle Goodman, who arrived at the scene. The skateboarder injured his legs and hand, and first responders advised him to get stitches for his left shin.

“(The student) advised the east/west lights were yellow turning red and the pedestrian lights were not illuminated,” Goodman said. “(He) then admitted he was in the wrong for crossing the intersection.”

In another incident, a student struck a curb with his bicycle, injuring his face and neck as well as his knees. According to Goodman, who also responded to this incident, “The bicyclist ... advised he was not struck by any vehicles and that he only struck the curb, causing his injuries.”

“It is not uncommon for the West Lafayette Police Department to see an increase in crashes of all types in tandem with Purdue University’s’ school year,” WLPD Patrol Captain David Lord said in an email.

Lord offered several safety tips for cyclists and pedestrians traveling the streets of West Lafayette and Purdue’s campus:

  • Allow a comfortable amount of time for travel.
  • Remove distractions from navigating traffic, such as cell phones, and remain aware of one’s surroundings.
  • Attempt to make eye contact with drivers to ensure they have seen you.
  • Follow all traffic and safety laws.
  • Wear appropriate protective gear when riding bikes, skateboards or scooters.

“As our citizens and students become more familiar with their routes of travel,” Lord said, “crashes of all types tend to subside.”

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