Highway Patrol officers in Contra Costa County are trying to figure out how a 12-year-old boy got hit by a car and killed while riding his bicycle to school on Monday morning.
The crash happened at 7:48 a.m. when a mother driving an SUV was trying to make a right turn from Excelsior School onto the Byron Highway, when she hit 12-year-old Burgess Hu of Discovery Bay.
“Felt that she had struck some sort of object and immediately pulled over to the right shoulder,” said CHP officer John Fransen.
The boy and his bicycle were dragged a short distance underneath the vehicle.
Hu, a well known and popular 7th grader, was a fixture on the roads of Byron.
“He rides his bike every single day. That’s how we know of him. He’s one of the kids that rides into school. Not many kids ride that stretch of road,” said Excelsior parent Chris Klemchuk.
The Byron highway is very busy – with lots of kids, more cars and very little shoulder to speak of.
“Highway 4 coming in front of Safeway, that’s a freeway in the morning, it’s very strange for a boy to ride that stretch,” said Klemchuk. He believes the traffic could have been a problem for the driver Monday morning, “I don’t know if the woman was looking left and then found a hole and then just went, not knowing he was there.”
At Excelsior, a small memorial of flowers and balloons sits out front and grief counselors have been brought in to help console students at the small Contra Costa County school.