Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bicyclist killed in Largo accident

LARGO — A bicyclist died early Saturday along Starkey Road after he was hit by a van, Largo police said.

Gregory Gancarz, 55, was struck in the northbound curb lane at 4:48 a.m. and died at the scene. The van, a 1996 GMC driven by 62-year-old Lonnie Baumbach, was northbound in the 1200 block of Starkey Road when it hit Gancarz, police said. The area of the crash has no streetlights and Gancarz of Largo did not have a headlight or taillight on the bicycle, investigators said.

The van's speed does not appear to be a factor and the investigation is continuing, police said.

Baumbach of Largo is an independent delivery contractor for the St. Petersburg Times. He has been a contractor for more than eight years, said Jim Thompson, the Times' operations manager for home delivery. Thompson said he knew of no other driving-related issues or complaints involving Baumbach's work as an independent contractor.

Florida leads the nation in bicycling and pedestrian fatalities. Gancarz is at least the 20th bicyclist to be killed since July while riding on area roads. A consultant who wrote a report for Hillsborough County earlier this year about cyclist-vs.-car accidents found that the blame was split evenly for accidents between 2005 and 2009.

Amid the accidents, the Florida Department of Transportation launched a print, radio and television campaign to promote pedestrian and bicycle safety.

Bicyclist killed in Largo accident 06/18/11 [Last modified: Saturday, June 18, 2011 8:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Once 'angry' about Obamacare, Republican David Jolly came to see it as 'safety net'


    Former Congressman David Jolly, who ran against Obamacare in 2013, said in an interview Monday night that he now considers it a "safety net."

  2. Five children hospitalized after chlorine release at Tampa pool store


    Five children were sickened at a pool store north of Tampa on Monday after a cloud of chlorine was released, according to Hillsborough County Fire Rescue.

  3. Deputies find unidentified decomposing body in Dunedin canal

    Public Safety

    DUNEDIN — Pinellas County sheriff's deputies found an unidentified male body floating in a Dunedin canal Monday afternoon, the Sheriff's Office said.

  4. Rays acquire slick-fielding shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria from Marlins

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Chaim Bloom said the Rays weren't necessarily in the market for a shortstop. The team has a number of those. But when the Marlins recently began shopping Adeiny Hechavarria, well, that was too much to pass up.

    Adeiny Hechavarria has emerged as one of baseball’s top defensive shortstops in the past three seasons with the Marlins.
  5. Lightning journal: Forward Yanni Gourde agrees to two-year deal

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Just three years ago, Yanni Gourde was fighting to stay in pro hockey.

    Tampa Bay Lightning center Yanni Gourde celebrates after scoring against the Florida Panthers during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, March 11, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) TPA108