Police are looking for a driver who fled the scene of a fatal hit and run on Rockaway Boulevard in Ozone Park on Sunday night.
At 9:37 p.m., police responded to a 911 call of a bicyclist struck at Rockaway Boulevard and 90th Street in Ozone Park. Upon arrival, officers discovered a 40-year-old man, whose name police have not yet released, lying on Rockaway Boulevard with severe head trauma. EMS also responded to the location and transported the bicyclist to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.
Upon further investigation, cops said the victim was traveling westbound on Rockaway Boulevard approaching 90th Street on his bicycle when he sideswiped the passenger side of a black Mercedes Benz party van, which was also traveling westbound on Rockaway Boulevard. As a result, the cyclist was knocked to the ground and run over by the van. Cops allege that witnesses told them the van operator momentarily stopped and exited his vehicle, then returned to the van and continued westbound on Rockaway Boulevard, fleeing the scene.
Police could not confirm if the victim was hit by a second vehicle.
“It may have been just an unfortunate accident,” said one police source. “It was dark, they probably didn’t see him. But that they didn’t stay at the scene is a big problem.”
There have been no arrests as of press time and the investigation is ongoing.
One resident who lives near the scene was at the site Monday morning.
“Cars do often speed down this stretch, but there have been very few accidents as of late,” the resident said.
She added that cyclists ride down Rockaway Boulevard often, but the width of the street usually keeps the bikes and traffic apart.
“I see them riding and they’re usually far enough away from cars,” she said. “They’re often riding closer to parked cars.”
According to crash data compiled by Streetsblog, Sunday’s accident marks the fifth time a pedestrian or cyclist has been killed by a motorist on Rockaway Boulevard between City Line and Rosedale since January 2013.