Cyclist killed by suspected drunk driver, police say

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TOWARDS THE RACE:
A Filipino man was riding alongside three other people when he was struck from behind by a speeding vehicle, police said.

  • By Shelley Shan / Staff Reporter, with CNA

A cyclist was struck and killed early yesterday morning by a driver who was believed to be drunk while on his way to a bicycle race in New Taipei City, police said.

The cyclist, a Filipino working at a factory in Lujhu District of Taoyuan (蘆竹), was riding with three other workers to participate in the annual Double Home Court West Coast Road Cycling Challenge when he was killed in the hit-and-run incident. , they said.

EARLY IN THE MORNING

The incident happened at 4:27 a.m. as the four were riding Highway 15 towards Liaotianding Temple, where cyclists were gathering for the race.

The 32-year-old cyclist was hit from behind by a speeding vehicle near Rui-Ping Elementary School in Linkou District (林口), police said.

He died at the scene after suffering broken bones and serious head injuries, they said.

A local resident said she heard loud noises caused by the crash and helped cyclists call the 119 emergency line.

FOUND IN BUSHES

Police said they found the cyclist’s body and his damaged bicycle in the bushes by the side of the road.

The driver involved in the accident reportedly abandoned his vehicle and fled the scene when police arrived, they said.

Police then used vehicle registration records and monitoring systems to determine that the vehicle belonged to a man named Chien (簡), who was summoned to the Linkou police station for questioning.

Chien showed up at the police station at 9 a.m. accompanied by a friend.

The New Taipei City District Attorney’s Office released Chien on NT$200,000 bail.

Police quoted him as saying he was driving home after having dinner with his friends on Saturday night, adding that he had abandoned the vehicle and fled because he was driving under the influence when the accident happened.

A test showed Chien’s blood alcohol level exceeded the legal limit of 0.25 milligrams per litre, police said.

He faced criminal charges of endangering public safety, leaving the scene of a fatal accident and wrongful death, they added.

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