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INDIANAPOLIS — A 24-year-old cyclist was hit by a school bus and killed Thursday morning on his commute to work.

Neil Kelty
Neil Kelty

Neil Kelty was riding westbound on Westlane when he was hit by an eastbound bus turning left onto Ditch Road around 7:30 a.m.

No students were on the IPS bus at the time.

IMPD says Kelty was in the bike lane and wearing a helmet.

State Police are investigating the mechanics of the bus to rule out a mechanical problem. IMPD is investigating the crash. No arrests are expected. It is not yet known who was at fault or the color of the traffic light.

Connie Schmucker is the Advocacy Director for Bicycle Garage Indy and says, “I got into bicycle advocacy because I want other people to experience the same amount of joy that I get from bicycling.”

And Schmucker knows the carefree joy can turn to heartache in a split second.

Motorists and bicyclists have the exact same rights and responsibilities.

“You want to be predictable and you want to be visible,” said Schmucker.

Schmucker says you can be predictable with hand signals, just like a driver has to use turn signals.

Lights, just like on a car, help you see and be visible.

She says a helmet is a must and a mirror is something you should consider.

“If you want to see the cars behind you, because you should be riding the same direction as traffic, there are mirrors that you can either put on the handlebars or on your sunglasses or on your helmet.”

And practice your ABC’s.  Check the air in your tires, check your brakes and make sure your chain is moving freely.

On a bike or in a car, Schmucker says to simply be aware.

In Indianapolis, you must leave a 3-foot clearance when passing a cyclist.

When you’re riding, just like in your car, watch out for potholes from the winter, especially if riding at night.

With nice weather and a city moving toward a more bike-friendly atmosphere, there are sure to be more and more bicyclists to share the road with.

“We’re seeing a lot more people on bikes and it’s a learning curve for everybody to get along and be aware.”

Bicycle Garage Indy offers free safety classes and has a lot of educational materials online. Click here for more information.