- Editor’s Note: This article was updated with additional details from Aurora police, including the identity of the motorcycle driver.
Aurora Police continue to investigate a Tuesday fatal crash between a motorcycle and a semi truck on Sequoia Drive that resulted in the death of a 22-year-old Aurora man.
According to Aurora police reports, the crash occurred at about 6:35 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 11, in the 1500 block of Sequoia Drive.
Police said a 2004 Kawasaki motorcycle driven by Christopher A. Gonzalez, 22, of the 1500 block of Lincolnshire Ave., Aurora, was eastbound on Sequoia about one-quarter mile west of Randall Road, when it collided with a 2015 Freightliner that was also eastbound and turning left into the driveway of a business.
According to the preliminary investigation, Gonzalez was apparently traveling at a high rate of speed and tried to stop before hitting the side of the tractor. He was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash but suffered massive head injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. The driver of the semi, a 41-year-old Geneva man, was not ticketed.
An autopsy will not be performed, Aurora police said. There were no signs of alcohol or drug use at the crash site.
Sequoia between Randall and Edgelawn Drive was closed for about four hours while Aurora police traffic investigators reconstructed the crash.
Because a commercial vehicle was involved, the Illinois State Police is assisting in the investigation.
This was the second motorcycle-versus-truck fatality in Aurora in the past two weeks. Bradley L. Stein, a 54-year-old Aurora man, died Thursday, July 30, 2015, after he tried to make a U-turn on his motorcycle and was hit by a large commercial truck on Butterfield Road.
According to the Illinois Department of Transportation and the Illinois Motorcycle Dealers Association, motorcycle fatalities account for almost 15 percent of all traffic fatalities in Illinois. Motorcycle fatalities increased from 148 in 2012 to 155 in 2013, according to provisional data. The number dropped to 118 in 2014.
Illinois is one of two states that offer free motorcycle training classes to licensed residents. Since the Cycle Rider Safety Training Program started in 1976, almost 400,000 riders throughout Illinois have learned the basics of motorcycle riding or taken advantage of the opportunity to learn more about motorcycle safety.
To learn more about IDOT’s motorcycle safety program and courses, as well as the state’s motorcycle laws and regulations, statistics, and additional educational materials, please visit www.startseeingmotorcycles.org
SOURCE: Aurora Police Department, IDOT