Video Shows Utility Truck Nearly Crushing Cyclist on Southeast 52nd Avenue

Is it a government truck?

A video posted to Facebook on Tuesday shows what appears to be a government utility vehicle nearly hitting a cyclist while making a right turn off Southeast 52nd Avenue.

The cyclist, who is using the bike lane on 52nd Avenue near the Trap Restaurant, stops before the ladder truck crosses through the bike lane, narrowly avoiding being hit.

Scott Watson, the Facebook user who posted the video along with the caption "State/ city vehicle," has not yet responded to WW's request for comment.

WW has not yet confirmed whether the vehicle is owned by the government. The license plate appears to have an "E" on the left side of the numbers, which means that it's government exempt and owned by a government agency.

Related: Why can't Portland use its gas-tax money to paint some crosswalks?

In the video, the cyclist is wearing safety gear, including a helmet, a reflective jacket, and a flashing tail light.

"This makes me very uncomfortable and also filled with rage," wrote one commenter. Another wrote, "#onelessbike," to which Watson replied, "That could have been me."

The video arrives as public outrage continues to grow over traffic safety in Portland. A 15-year-old pedestrian, Fallon Smart, was killed by a speeding motorist on Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard on Aug. 19.

As of Sept. 2, four bicyclists have died in traffic collisions in Portland this year.

Advocates are calling for infrastructure that emphasizes pedestrian and cyclist safety over cars—including "road diets" that reduce traffic lanes.

Southeast Foster Road, a block from where the video was taken, is slated for a proposed road diet that has irritated local business owners.

UPDATE, 4:36 p.m. Thursday:

Scott Watson, 45, the cyclist who filmed the video, says he was biking home from work when he witnessed the near-miss.

"The cyclist had been at the corner and was obviously visible ahead of the truck," Watson says. He says he doesn't know the cyclist.

He says he purchased his Cycliq front-mounted camera for situations like this, comparing it to a dashcam.

"I just recently got the camera because my neighbor had an accident where he broke his collarbone and had a concussion," Watson says. "I've seen a number of unsafe things that prompted me to start using the camera."

When he got home, he posted the video to Facebook out of frustration.

"There just seems to be an animosity between drivers and cyclists. [There's a] lack of knowledge each other's responsibilities—cyclists riding on sidewalks, drivers not acknowledging that cyclists have the rights to use the road," he says.

"This person didn't realize that the bike lane is a throughway of traffic and they are turning across it," he says. "People need to acknowledge that if there's a cyclist there, they have the right to use that lane."