Cyclist killed following collision with vehicle on Duke University Rd. / West Chapel Hill St.

The collision happened on October 18. Kent Winberry was operating his bicycle, traveling east on Duke University Road. He entered the intersection of that road with Chapel Hill Road (where the name of Duke University Road changes to West Chapel Hill St.).

At that intersection, a motorist approached from the opposite direction. That motorist, apparently failing to notice Winberry, began to turn left, intending to drive South on Chapel Hill Rd.

The motorist collided with Winberry in a type of incident which is often referred to as a “left cross.” Winberry was rushed to Duke Hospital with critical injuries. He passed away last night.

My thoughts and wishes are with Winberry’s friends and family.

I didn’t know Kent Winberry, but I know where he was hit. I have ridden through that intersection probably hundreds of times.

This is the second time in as many years that I’ve written a blog post about a cycling fatality in Durham. This isn’t really what I signed up for here. Please, stop killing cyclists.


I rode along the stretch of road where this incident occurred and have recorded a video of the location. I hope something can be done to improve safety in this area.

6 thoughts on “Cyclist killed following collision with vehicle on Duke University Rd. / West Chapel Hill St.”

  1. Indeed this is a tragedy, and it makes me very sad. I hate to focus on the details, but I’m trying to understand what happened. Is there no light at that intersection? Did that not help the situation?

    1. There is no light at this intersection. Duke University Rd. (aka West Chapel Hill St.), the road on which both Winberry and the motorist were traveling, runs east/west and has the right of way. The intersecting road (Chapel Hill *Road* aka Maplewood Ave) runs north/south and has stop signs.

      Winberry was going straight eastward through the intersection, and one would not normally stop or yield doing so. He would have presumably been moving at “normal” speed, which I would expect to be about 15-20 miles per hour for a typical recreational cyclist. There is a brief downhill stretch leading to the intersection.

      The motorist would have been making a left turn from the opposite side of the intersection, with no stop sign or light. Since he was turning left, he would have been expected to yield to eastbound traffic such as Winberry. He failed to do so.

      The motorist basically turned left out in front of (or into the side of – I’m not certain on this particular point) Winberry from the opposite direction.

      If I get some time, I will try to make a video to illustrate what both Winberry and the motorist would have seen.

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