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Posted at 9:01 PM ET, 05/26/2010

Teen dies in Potomac crash

By Erica Johnston

A Potomac teenager was killed Wednesday when his off-road motorcycle crashed into a SUV at a Potomac intersection, Montgomery County police said.

After the collision at Carmelita Drive and Hemswell Lane about 4 p.m., the 17-year-old was taken to Suburban Hospital, where he died from his injuries. No one in the Ford Bronco was injured, police said.

Investigators believe the motorcycle was traveling on Hemswell Lane and tried to turn right onto Carmelita Drive when it struck the SUV.

Police did not release the teen’s name, pending notification of his family.

-- Clarence Williams

By Erica Johnston  | May 26, 2010; 9:01 PM ET
Categories:  Crime and Public Safety, Maryland  
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Yet another DC area traffic tragedy. So sad. It seems from the few facts noted here that the motorcycle rider failed to negotiate a turn and plowed into the SUV. So I am compelled to ask a question: Is the *off-road* motorcycle the teen was riding safe to operate on the roads? If not, there is a very important cautionary tale here.

Posted by: nan_lynn | May 27, 2010 1:07 AM | Report abuse

Some off-road motorcycles are called 'dual-sport' bikes which means they have equipment that makes them road legal but can navigate through fields and trails. They have mirrors, turn signals, brake lights, and are licensed vehicles. Their tires are similar to tires you would see on a 4-wheel jeep or truck, with larger knobs to grab the dirt but not as large as you would see in a typical dirt bike in motocross. The question I would have is whether this kid was crossing the road from a path through the woods or field and just didn't see the car coming, or was he riding the bike strictly on the street. From the information in this story it's not possible to tell. But my heart goes out to this young man and his family and friends. I also ride off-road and it's a fun sport but like any motor sports, it can be dangerous and you can seriously or fatally injure yourself if you make a mistake. God bless you, kid!

Posted by: dlpetersdc | May 27, 2010 8:29 AM | Report abuse

I heard from a friend who lives a block away that the teen was riding on the road, was careening around a turn, and hit the SUV. He wasn't offroading at the time and wasn't wearing a helmet either.

Posted by: rmeskill | May 27, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

And for that matter, why do all crash stories disembody the driver of the crash? This teen's off-road vehicle didn't 'crash into an SUV', the '*teen crashed* his off-road vehicle into an SUV'. As long as we disembody drivers no one is at fault here. I feel sorry for the teen and his parents, but I feel really sorry for the driver of that SUV, who will likely have to live with the images of something he likely had no control over but will haunt him for years to come. Making it sound like it wasn't the teen's fault (which presumably hasn't been proven yet) but his vehicle's, only furthers these feelings of remorse.

Posted by: rmeskill | May 27, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

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