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Cyclist killed when West Palm drawbridge opens


A woman pushing a bicycle across the Royal Park Bridge connecting West Palm Beach to the town of Palm Beach died Sunday afternoon when drawbridge opened, causing her to fall 60 feet to her death.

West Palm police and witnesses say she was in the eastbound pedestrian lane when the span began to open and she attempted to hold on but was unsuccessful.

Investigators are now looking into why the bridgetender did not see the woman as she crossed.

Warning signals are in place at every drawbridge and rules stipulate the bridgetender is to ensure the span is clear of vehicles and pedestrians before opening the bridge to marine traffic.

The bridge is managed by the Florida Department of Transportation but staffed by an outside company.

The identity of the victim has not been released and the Royal Park Bridge was reopened to vehicle traffic Sunday evening.