Saskatchewan

Family calls cyclist's death 'senseless'

A family from Mossbank is urging drivers to take care around cyclists, after a 38-year-old mother and wife was killed when a delivery truck hit the bike she was riding.

Drivers urged to be cautious around bikes on the road

Christina Singbeil goes for a run near her home in Mossbank, SK. Singbeil was killed on July 20, 2015 when a delivery truck hit the bike she was travelling on. (Submitted by Kathy Volkmann)

A family from Mossbank, Sask., is calling the death of their loved one, who was struck by a delivery truck while riding her bike, senseless.

Christina Singbeil, 38, was training for a charity bike marathon along Highway 43 near Mazenod on Monday morning when a delivery truck clipped her from behind.

Both were travelling eastbound on the same side of the road. The family says a third vehicle was attempting to pass the delivery truck just as it was going past Singbeil. 

The driver of the delivery truck attempted to perform CPR on Singbeil, who family members say died before the ambulance arrived.

"They don't want to be angry at the two drivers, the other drivers, but you cannot help be.  It shouldn't have happened," said Singbeil's aunt, Judy Weiss.

"That road should have been big enough for everyone," Weiss said.

Donny and Christina Singbeil pose with their two boys, 9 and 14, for a family photo. (Submitted by Singbeil family)

Singbeil was active in her community and just took a job as the full-time librarian at Mossbank School. Her two sons, 9 and 14, both attend the school. She had been married to her husband Donny Singbeil for over 15 years.

The immediate family was too upset to talk but prepared a statement to send a message to drivers.

"The accident ended a beautiful life and the family just wants to remind everyone to share the road with care for all using it, because in the blink of an eye, everything can change," it read. 

Weiss said the family is having a hard time dealing with the loss of someone so family oriented. 

"Even though she had her church and her friends, she always stopped anything and everything for her two boys. Her family – her sons and Donny – came first no matter what."

Christina Singbeil poses for a portrait near an old shed in Mossbank, SK. Singbeil's family wants drivers to be cautious when near cyclists on the road. (Submitted by Singbeil family)

The Assiniboia RCMP is continuing to investigate the cause of the crash and has called in the Swift Current RCMP Collision Reconstruction team. The RCMP's media spokesperson said it could take some time to look at all the circumstances and determine the exact cause of the crash.

According to Weiss, the stretch of highway Singbeil was travelling isn't normally busy but was recently rebuilt and isn't yet completed. She said only the centre lines are marked. 

Weiss said Singbeil was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash. 

"She never rode her bike without a helmet. It was a number one rule: must wear helmet."

Julie Voisin, Singbeil's sister-in-law, said it's up to drivers to protect the lives of cyclists.

"They're doing everything they can, wearing protective gear. They just need people driving to be aware."

Cyclist was preparing for charity MS Bike marathon

Weiss says Singbeil was an avid cyclist and was out on Monday training for an upcoming bike marathon.

The MS Bike marathon raises money for the MS Society while increasing awareness. Participants are expected to bike 150 km over two days.

Singbeil's trip from Mazenod to Gravelbourg and back was approximately 50 km. She was three km away from her destination when she was struck.

Carissa Trenton, communications manager for the MS Society, says people like Singbeil make their organization a success.

"They're the ones that help us to advance and improve the quality of life of people living with MS in Saskatchewan," Trenton said. "They are our breath, they are the life of our organization."

Trenton said the organization will make mention of Singbeil's efforts and her dedication at this year's event on August 15 and 16.

While the organization posts daily road safety tips for cyclists on its social media pages, Trenton said the responsibility shouldn't only be on cyclists.

"Most cyclists are really aware of the traffic around them, but there's only so far that will take them. It's in the driver's hands as well."

Mazenod, Sask., is about 160 km southwest of Regina. (Google Maps/CBC)

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