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Injured bicyclist in ‘fair’ condition

By Staff | Sep 19, 2013

A Cape Coral bicyclist was listed in fair condition Thursday after a traffic accident last week.

Gary L. Wheeler Jr., 43, of 1104 N.E. Van Loon Terrace, remained hospitalized at Lee Memorial Hospital, where he was taken following the Sept. 13 crash on Northeast Pine Island Road.

According to police, Wheeler was headed westbound on Pine Island in the marked bicycle lane on a Genesis bicycle.

At about 7:13 p.m., an Infiniti SUV traveling eastbound on Pine Island in the outside lane drifted to the right in the 1500 block, causing the right half of the SUV to enter the bicycle lane.

The front of the Infiniti struck the front of the bicycle head on.

Due to the collision, Wheeler was forced up onto the SUV’s hood and into the windshield, before being ejected off of the vehicle.

Police reported that Wheeler was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

He sustained life-threatening head injuries and was trauma-alerted in critical condition.

The driver of the Infiniti, Joseph A. Anders, 58, of 9614 Cobalt Cove Drive, Naples, was not injured.

The accident is not alcohol or drug related, officials said..

There have been 15 traffic fatalities in the Cape so far this year, in addition to two medically ruled deaths, which are cases where the cause of death is not related to injuries sustained in the crash.

Last year, the city recorded 10 traffic fatalities, compared to 11 traffic fatalities in 2011.