A bicyclist was killed Thursday morning in a wreck with an 18-wheeler in the 4700 block of Plank Road, Baton Rouge police said.
Elwyn Pate, 80, of Baton Rouge, suffered an accidental death due to multisystem trauma, said East Baton Rouge Parish coroner William “Beau” Clark.
Sgt. Don A. Coppola, a police spokesman, said Pate was riding a bicycle northbound in the southbound lanes of Plank Road when he was struck by an 18-wheeler, which was turning onto Plank Road from Byron Street about 10:30 a.m.
Pate died at the scene.
No charges are expected to be filed against the driver of the 18-wheeler truck, Coppola said.
Coppola said the department’s Traffic Homicide Division is investigating the wreck.
Bike Baton Rouge safety advocate Mika Torkkola said this death was a reflection of two larger problems in the community, including education and infrastructure.
“The guy who was killed was riding the wrong way down that particular road, which is illegal and unsafe, but a lot of people were brought up in Baton Rouge thinking that is the correct way to do it,” Torkkola said. “People do that because they think it’s safer, and it just isn’t.”
In addition, Torkkola said, north Baton Rouge, where the wreck took place, has no bike lanes.
“That is probably where the majority of people who ride bikes are,” Torkkola said. “Folks up there who can’t afford a car, that’s how they get to work and school.”