Eight Cyclists Killed in Italy

Photo: Reuters

Eight cyclists were killed by a driver on drugs in southern Italy yesterday, according to international news reports.

A speeding motorist high on marijuana driving with his son in the car plowed through a group of riders on their Sunday ride in the area of Marinella a Sant’Eufemia.

Following the carnage, twisted bicycles lay strewn across the road, interspersed only by bodies covered by white fabric. Four others were injured including the child riding in the car.

An initial police investigation found that the driver was trying to pass another car, and ran headlong into the 10 cyclists who were traveling in the opposite direction.

The driver, said to be a Moroccan national was only slightly injured, and was placed under arrest for multiple homicide according to local authorities. La Repubblica identified the 21-year-old as Chafik Elketani whose license was suspended for dangerous driving.

The riders who died at the scene were identified as Fortunato Bernardi, Rosario Perri (55), Francesco Stranges (51), Vinicio Pottin (47), Giovanni Cannizzaro (58), Pasquale De Luca (35) and Domenico Palazzo.

Silvio Rocca of the White Cross said the incident was a “massacre.”

According to the Italian news agency, ANSA, the cyclists were part of a local group  at the Lamezia Terme gym.

Photo: EPA.

In their coverage of  the accident, MailOnline said, “As a result of the crash, Italian cycling officials complained about safety problems for cyclists who have to share roads with cars.”

And we thought cycling in Europe was safe.

Other reporting on the accident:

Mail Online:


Cycling News


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