Bicyclist hospitalized after being hit by CMPD SUV in north Charlotte

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A busy road in north Charlotte was blocked for hours early Tuesday morning after a bicyclist was hit by a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police vehicle.

Police said the collision was reported around 7 a.m. on Sunset Road near Kiev Drive, between Peachtree and Beatties Ford roads.

Paramedics said the cyclist, Joe Watson, was taken to a hospital.

Watson later told Channel 9 that he had a broken arm.

"I was riding down the road and the cop light was bright, so I moved over and he ran me to the side, and I turned around, and next thing I knew, I fell to the ground," Watson said.

The officer was headed west on Sunset Road and Watson was headed east in the same lane, against traffic.

The officer told police that he heard a noise on the right side of his vehicle, turned around and found Watson on the side of the road.

He said he never saw Watson traveling on the road. Officers said Watson was wearing dark clothing and had no light on his bike.

State law requires bikers to ride with the flow of traffic.

Watson is grateful that things weren't worse.

"I'm blessed to be alive," Watson said.

Neighbors said that stretch of road is very dangerous because there are no sidewalks or shoulders, putting pedestrians and bicyclists too close to cars.

"We definitely need DOT to look at this matter,” said one resident. “Somebody is going to get killed on this part of Sunset Road."

Officers are still investigating what led to the crash, but said a preliminary investigation indicates that the cyclist was wearing all dark clothing, did not have a headlamp and was traveling against traffic.

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