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Cyprus

Teenager killed after car hits his motorcycle (Updated)

A 17-year-old was hit and killed in a head on collision in Kissonerga in Paphos on Wednesday night.

Christian Harilaou died while driving his moped, after being hit by a car travelling towards him, as the driver attempted to overtake a line of traffic.

According to the head of Paphos traffic police, Zenon Psathities, the driver of a ‘luxury’ vehicle, a 23-year-old Russian national, was arrested at the scene.

Psathities told the Cyprus Mail that on visiting the site to investigate just after the accident occurred on Wednesday evening, it ‘looked like a bomb had gone off as parts of the BMW car were strewn all over the road,’ and that the teenager had most probably died at the scene due to the force of the impact.

He said: “Christian Harilaou, 17, was hit by a car which was overtaking a line of traffic in a prohibited area at around 9.30pm.  He was driving his moped alongside his friend travelling down Kissonerga Avenue in Paphos, heading towards Peyia and both were wearing helmets. Sadly, a helmet could do nothing to protect him in this instance.”

The teen was rushed by ambulance to the Accident and Emergency department of Paphos General Hospital, where on the doctor on duty pronounced his death.

The police chief said that the Russian driver had attempted to overtake a line of traffic, (investigations are underway to determine his speed,) in an area which is ‘prohibited’. The two mopeds were driving side by side and as the vehicle approached them in their lane, travelling from the opposite direction. They veered in different directions to avoid being hit by the BMW, he said.

“One went left and the other right to avoid a crash but Christian was hit, his friend saw everything.”
Psathities said that the BMW driver stopped at the scene and called police. He too was apparently distraught.

“He was arrested at the scene on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. He was tested for alcohol in his bloodstream, which was zero.”

The speed limit on the stretch of road where the accident took place is 50km per hour, and investigations are being carried out to see if the car was travelling at a greater speed, he said.

The 23-year-old driver said in a statement to the police that he didn’t realise the 17-year-old was there as the road is poorly lit.

The victim lived in Kato Paphos.

The traffic police head had to inform the teenager’s family of his death and said that instances such as these leave a huge impact not only on the family and friends of the victims, but also on all those involved with the emergency services and local authorities.

“It is heartbreaking to give this news and terrible for the families involved. Last week we also lost another youngster in Inia. I implore all drivers to follow the law. Motorcyclists, cars, busses, lorries; everyone has to keep to the laws, abide by the speed limit, follow the instructions given by signs or road markings, don’t drink alcohol and drive, wear a seat belt and a helmet.”

Police photographs taken at the scene early on Thursday morning show a twisted, mangled mess of metal- all that is left of the teenagers decimated moped. The front left side of the BMW is ripped apart suggesting the huge impact and force with which it hit the teenager’s moped.

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