FHP: Severely injured bicyclist at fault in crash

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A bicyclist who was knocked off her bicycle and dragged underneath a trailer in February was ticketed Sunday by the Florida Highway Patrol, which said she was at fault.

Elayne A. Jackson, 46, of East Naples, received a moving violation ticket for an incorrect left turn.

On the afternoon of Feb. 29, Jackson was on Vanderbilt Beach Road attempting to turn left onto U.S. 41 North.

Stopped at a red light, Jackson and her bicycle were positioned in between the left turn lane and the through lane for vehicles going straight, according to the accident report. When the light turned green, Jackson remained stopped with a red arrow while the driver to her right, Jerry Mac Blackwell, 52, of Bonita Springs, proceeded forward.

Somehow, Jackson was ejected from her bicycle and dragged underneath a trailer towed by Blackwell’s Ford F350. Troopers later measured a 229-foot trail of blood in the intersection.

Jackson was flown to Lee Memorial Hospital after having fractured her knee, severed her liver, lost her left breast and broken three vertebrae, nine ribs and her collar bone, among other injuries. She was released from the hospital about two weeks ago.

“I am disappointed that I’ve been cited,” Jackson said Monday, referring other questions to her lawyer.

Attorney Theodore Zelman said Jackson was improving, though she is due for another skin graft and still requires at-home care and the use of pain medications.

Jackson has not decided whether she will dispute the citation, he said.

In March, Zelman filed a notice of claim with the Collier County Commission, asking the county to accept financial responsibility for the accident. Blackwell is a county employee who was driving a county vehicle.

Zelman said Monday he still was investigating the claim.

County attorney Jeffrey A. Klatzkow said the county had not reached a decision about the claim.

“We’re still a defendant in this, and it will be tried,” he said. “It’s still a horrific accident and an awful tragedy.”

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