UPDATE — Young bicyclist killed in collision with truck identified

A memorial has sprung up near where the young bicyclists was killed on Friday night. Post photo.

By the Daily Post staff

UPDATE, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11 — The Santa Clara County Medical Examiner-Corner today identified the young bicyclist killed by a truck on Friday night as Paul Lafargue, 11, of Palo Alto.

Lafargue was struck and killed by a flat bed truck at the corner of El Camino Real and California Avenue.

The medical examiner said the cause of death was multiple blunt force and crush injuries, and his manner of death was ruled an accident.

Police have not yet said whether the boy was in the crosswalk at the time of his death.

SATURDAY, MARCH 7 — A collision at El Camino Real and California Avenue claimed the life of a Greene Middle School student riding a bicycle.

Authorities haven’t named the young man, but Palo Alto school Superintendent Don Austin confirmed that the boy attended Greene Middle School at 750 N. California Ave.

“We don’t have school on Monday, but we will have support services in place on Tuesday,” Austin told the Post in an email. “The parents have requested that we don’t release more information. We will honor that request.”

On Friday (March 6) at 7:40 p.m., police received multiple calls reporting a collision between a vehicle and bicyclist on El Camino Real at California Avenue. Officers arrived on scene right away as did personnel from the Palo Alto Fire Department. The bicyclist, a middle-school aged boy from Palo Alto, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The arrow points to the approximate location of the collision on Friday night.

Police said both the vehicle and bicyclist were traveling eastbound on California Avenue approaching the intersection at El Camino Real, with the bicyclist riding on the sidewalk.

The vehicle, a white 2008 International flatbed truck, made a right turn to head southbound on El Camino Real, and collided with the bicyclist.

The driver, a man in his 60s from Palo Alto, stayed at the scene and cooperated with police. He was uninjured.

Police do not believe that drugs or alcohol were a factor in the collision. The investigation into the cause is ongoing. The driver of the truck has not been cited or arrested pending the outcome of the investigation.

Anyone who may have witnessed this collision and who has not already spoken with the police about it is encouraged to call (650) 329-2413. Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent via text message or voicemail to (650) 383-8984.


  1. Our schools could do more to educate kids about being careful on bikes, looking for cars, riding with lights, etc. Seem like this is a tragedy that didn’t need to happen.

  2. The Details of what happened could provide a lesson to help avoid these types of accidents in the future.
    : did Paul have night running lights?
    : a helmet?
    : did he have the right of way? (would assume yes)
    : did the driver fully stop and then make his right turn, or slow down and roll through the stop sign?
    : was he tired and/or in a hurry?

    I’ve seen Stanford students biking during my night Continuing Education class near the oval. About 1/4 have no lights; 80% no helmets. I’m a biker too & take every precaution including sidelights.

    Assume drivers DON’T SEE YOU and bike defensively. Don’t bike scared, bike aware and prepared.

    Drivers, please take an extra moment to check your environment. The one time you’re neglectful can cost someone, and their family, a lifetime of pain. I know. My sister was killed at the age of 9 by a motorist.

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