Amazon Ex-Exec Was Killed by Left Hand Turn

Sept. 20, 2013–By Jen Benepe

Ex-Amazon executive Joy Covey who died Wednesday was killed by a motorist who completed a left hand turn in front of her,reported

The location where Joy Covey was killed by a driver executing a left hand turn in front of her. CI visited this area last week, and refused to ride here due to dangerous conditions–narrow, twisting road, with no shoulder.

Covey hit the van shortly before 1:30 p.m. Sept. 18 on Skyline Boulevard at Elk Tree Road, according to California Highway Patrol Officer Art Montiel. She died at the scene of the crash.

Covey was wearing a helmet.

Montiel told the press that Covey was headed north on Skyline when she slammed into the side of a southbound delivery van that turned in front of her onto Elk Tree. The driver, a 22-year-old Fremont man, stayed at the scene and cooperated with police, said news reports.

The cause of the crash remained under investigation Wednesday.

Montiel said that drugs and alcohol did not appear to be a factor in the collision.

However, experienced cyclists know that there is often no reason for a left-hand turn executed in front of them by a driver other than carelessness. Many drivers simply only look for cars, not for cyclists.

The turn is extremely dangerous for cyclists because it means a head-on collision, resulting either in serious injury or death. Given that Covey was traveling downhill, speed would have been a factor in her death.

The area is extremely popular for cyclists traveling en route from the lower valley in Palo Alto, over the hills to the coastline and San Gregorio through wondrous treelined roads. But the roads are treacherously narrow, with no shoulder, and twisting turns. Though speed limits are about 35 mph, few drivers obey the speed limit there.

Covey, a Woodside resident, was the CFO at Amazon during its initial public offering. She was most recently served on the board of trustees at the San Francisco-based National Resource Defense Council.

“She encapsulated the heart and soul of NRDC and will be so deeply missed by all the NRDC family,” council president Frances Beinecke said in a statement.

“Her adventurous and indomitable spirit was infectious and she constantly challenged us to reach greater heights,” Beinecke said.

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