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Sayward motorcyclist killed in collision with pickup north of Courtenay

Apr 23 2012

A 47-year-old Sayward man died late Saturday afternoon when the motorcycle he was riding was broadsided by a pickup truck just north of Courtenay.

Duaine Roger Schlack is believed to have been making a U-turn at the intersection of Headquarters and Smith roads when he turned into the path of the vehicle that had been travelling behind him, Comox Valley RCMP said.

The driver of the Ford pickup thought Schlack had made a right turn onto Smith Road, but realized too late that the motorcyclist was turning around and coming back onto Headquarters Road.

The pickup driver left long tire marks on the pavement as he tried to brake, Const. Misty Dmytar said.

“The motorcycle [driver] didn’t stop,” she said. “He proceeded into oncoming traffic.”

Both traffic analysts and the coroner were on the scene Saturday and investigators are still trying to determine the cause, but all indications suggest Schlack was at fault.

“At this point, it’s pretty cut and dry — so that’s all we know until we hear anything more,” Dmytar said.

Neither speed nor alcohol were factors in the crash along the stretch of rural road, which has a speed limit of 80 km/h.

The area is not known for accidents, police say, but they warn the public to keep an eye out for motorcyclists now that the warmer weather has arrived.

Schlack was in another accident last year while on his motorcycle. Police said a vehicle broadsided him in that one, too, but they could provide few details about the first incident.

dspalding@timescolonist.com