Family sues 3 cities over bicyclist’s death

Specialty Solid Waste and Recycling trucks. Photo from the company's website.

By the Daily Post staff

The family of a bicyclist who was fatally hit by a garbage truck in Sunnyvale has named the cities of Palo Alto and Mountain View in a lawsuit, claiming that those cities are partially at fault because the truck had just taken those cities’ trash to the landfill at the time of the crash.

Scott Willis Harvey, 55, of Boulder Creek, was biking to work at Lockheed Martin when the Specialty Solid Waste and Recycling truck swerved into the bike lane and hit him around 6:50 a.m. on Feb. 1, 2018.

The cities of Palo Alto, Mountain View and Sunnyvale were all named in the suit because Bay Counties Waste Services contracted with all three cities.

The 2015 Peterbilt motor truck/trailer had just dropped off trash and recycling from the Sunnyvale Materials Recovery and Transfer Station to the Kirby Canyon Landfill in Morgan Hill.

Harvey was riding west in the bike lane on E. Caribbean Drive, near Borregas Drive. The truck was heading in the same direction when it hit him. The driver, Ralph Silva Castro, told police that he wasn’t using his cellphone and wasn’t distracted while he was driving.

He said he noticed a black object in the bike lane and tried to swerve left to get out of the way, then realized he had hit someone. The suit was filed on Dec. 13. The cities of Palo Alto and Mountain View have denied liability.

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