The view heading south on Sahuara Avenue at Grand Road.

A cyclist was stuck and killed this morning when he failed to stop at a stop sign and rode into the travel lanes on Grant Road.

A document issued to city officials says John T. Imberg, 59, was heading south on Sahaura Avenue, a residential street, when he failed to stop at the intersection with Grant Road.

According to the report, a driver heading west on Grant Road swerved to try to avoid hitting the cyclist. The driver clipped the bicyclist’s rear wheel and knocked the cyclist off his bike.

A second driver, also heading west, struck the cyclist while he was in the road.

The document said the cyclist was taken to UMC after the crash, which happened at approximately 9:18 a.m. He was pronounced dead at 10:14 a.m.

From the release: “There is no indication that excessive speed, alcohol, or drugs were factors in the collision related to the drivers. Toxicology results related to Mr. Imberg are pending the completion of an autopsy.”

From Google Streetview it appears that this intersection has a right turn only restriction at Grant Road.

Editor’s note: In a previous post I mentioned the lack of bike lanes, sharrows, shoulder along Grant Road. Given the description of the crash, that would not have come into play.


18 thoughts on “59-year-old cyclist killed in crash on Grant Road”
  1. The second dispatch didn’t make it out on the twitter feed. Looks like the crash happened at 9:18 and investigators were dispatched at 9:51.

    I’m never sure how useful the call numbers are for tracking an ongoing situation, but the initial response was 1110210261 and the investigators where dispatched  under call number 1110210291.

  2. Failing to stop while entering Grant Road suggests equipment failure or disorientation.  This is not the kind of “bad” riding behavior that cyclists are often accused of.  I can’t fathom anyone riding blindly into Grant Road just because they didn’t want to stop at a stop sign.  What terrible news.

  3. Let’s wait until the autopsy is complete before passing judgement. The victim may have had a stroke or a heart attack. Or something else may have gone terribly wrong with his body. It’s been known to happen.

  4. Do you know if the motorist was going west or east?  From the pictures in the KVOA article, it looked very much like the cyclist had crossed the eastbound lanes and was hoping to use the median strip as a refuge before crossing the westbound lanes.

  5. Well said, Martha.  It’s far too easy to jump to conclusions, and people tend to do it very easily. No matter who  was in the wrong, the accident is a tragedy.  Hopefully everyone will pause a moment and spare a thought or two for the rider’s family and the driver.  No one involved will escape without feeling the pain of tragedy.

    No matter the cause, Grant Rd ranks among my least favorite roads on which to ride, and I avoid as much as possible the section between Craycroft and Tanque Verde.  In fact, I avoid riding my bike on Grant Rd as much possible, no matter what the section of Grant Rd is.  I haven’t taken a look at the plans for widening the road, but I sure hope it includes proper bike lanes and proper, frequent signage reminding drivers of the presence of cyclists.

  6. You know, some years ago I witnessed a pedestrian attempting to cross south, only closer to Craycroft. He failed to see a car abreast of another and was struck. He didn’t make it. I don’t take those kinds of gambles myself man; drivers are overwhelmed and I’m one factor too many, the way I see it.

  7. Martha, I enjoy most every comment you post in Tucson Velo, but I have to say I’m confused about your comment above.  Who do you believe is passing judgment, and what is the judgment being passed?

  8. I know it sounds naive, but I think the speed limits should be no higher than 30 mph within the city limits. That would be good for both pedestrians and cyclists.

  9. John “Jack” Imberg was a good friend of mine, he was a great guy with a big heart. I’ll miss him while I’m stuck here on Earth, but I know I’ll see him again in the next life praise God.

    Love you Jack.

    Your friend always, Bear.

  10. I was asked to write a bit about my friend Jack, aka John Imberg. I posted above as Bear, as that is the name he knew me best by.

    Jack lived alone in a cozy little trailer park off of Country Club and Ft. Lowell called “The Pines”. I lived next to him there for about four years and that’s were I met Jack, he was living there when I moved in. He worked up on Grant and Wilmot at a restaurant/bar called “Kappy’s”, as their dishwasher. He didn’t make much as a dishwasher so he rode his bike everywhere. He had been riding his bike up and down Grant Road for several years with no problem so I was really shocked to see that he ran a stop sign and was killed.

    Jack believed in God and I had witnessed to him in the past and found this out. I believe he’s resting in Heaven now with the Lord, Jack had a heart of Gold.

    Jack didn’t have a whole lot of friends here in Tucson, and his family lives in San Francisco where he was also born and raised. I’m saddened even further that there will most likely be no funeral or memorial services for my good friend, due his family being far away, and due to him being poor, living at poverty level most of his life, if not below.

    Jack always had a smile on his face and had infectious laugh that could be heard from great distances and even through walls. He was a really cool guy and will be greatly missed by myself and my wife.

    God Rest Your Soul John T. “Jack” Imberg, we love you man!

  11.  Doesn’t sound naive at all to me. In most all European countries, speed limits in cities and towns are 30 mph. AND it’s illegal to use cell phones in any way. Plus, cops can pull anybody over for no reason. They don’t need an excuse, anyone is fair game. Which is not, as many here would argue, an infringement on personal freedom, but an accepted and effective means of traffic safety. Guess how many drivers drive impaired knowing their license will be suspended – or taken away for life – if they get pulled over by a cop, which can happen anytime, anywhere, even if they drive perfectly adequately? It works GREAT. Here, people drive distracted, under the influence and go speeds in excess of 50 miles in the city. In Germany, where I grew up and rode bikes all my life, I didn’t hear of or know a single person killed on a bicycle in all my 32 years of living there. Within a month that I moved to Tucson, I heard about a cyclist killed on a road in the city. And from then on, it’s just been carnage. I still can’t wrap my head around why that is. But I see that  people eat in their cars, they put their make-up on in their cars, they drink in their cars, some even read in their cars, they make their phone calls in their cars, and they text in their cars. To me it’s no wonder cyclists and pedestrians get hit all the time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.