18-year-old cyclist killed on Mount Royal honoured with ghost bike
The installation was unveiled near the site of the accident on Camillien-Houde
Friends, family and fellow cyclists gathered on Mount Royal Wednesday morning for a ceremony in honour of a young cyclist who died earlier this month.
A ghost bike, a white bicycle placed at the scene of fatal cycling accidents, was unveiled near where 18-year-old Clément Ouimet was fatally struck Oct. 4.
The bike frame used in the memorial belonged to Ouimet, and was last used by his father, also an avid cycler.
Ouimet's father donned his son's racing bib earlier this month at the starting line of a race in which Ouimet was supposed to participate.
Ouimet had been riding his bike southbound on Camillien-Houde Way, near the lookout on Mount Royal, when a driver made an illegal U-turn, police say.
He didn't have time to get out of the way and hit the vehicle, an SUV. He was taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Édouard Beaudoin, who attended the ceremony Wednesday, told CBC that he used to race with Ouimet on the same team.
"He became a close friend really quickly," said Beaudoin. "I don't think the death of my friend was necessary."
Ouimet's death prompted calls for the City of Montreal to better protect cyclists travelling on the popular training route over the mountain.
The city recently unveiled a series of new provisional safety measures, including the installment of a digital speed indicator, more concrete barriers and more signs warning that U-turns are forbidden.
The move has drawn both support and opposition from cyclists, with some saying the new measures come too late.
Gabrielle Anctil, who started the ghost bike movement in Montreal, said she's not convinced temporary measures will make the roads safer for cyclists.
"There's nothing that has changed. People still do illegal U-turns, they still drive too fast, there's still too much traffic."
"We don't need another committee to discuss solutions. We know what the solutions are already," she said.
"The investigation into Ouimet's death on Mount Royal is ongoing, Montreal police say. We've known them for so long. We've known them since before Clément was born."
With files from Lauren McCallum