Motorcyclist collides with street sweeper

Clovis Police Detective James Lara takes a look at the motorcycle at the scene of a crash between a motorcycle and a city street sweeper Thursday near the intersection of Remuda and Wrangler Way. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth)

By Andy Jackson: CNJ staff writer

A motorcyclist was in serious condition late Thursday night after the dirt bike he was riding collided with a Clovis street sweeper earlier in the day at the intersection of Wrangler Way and an alley behind Remuda Drive.

James Antill, 41, of Clovis was rushed to Plains Regional Medical Center and then air-lifted to Covenant Medical Center in Lubbock with serious injuries, according to a release from the Clovis Police Department.

The driver of the street sweeper, Frank Lucero, 53, was not injured in the crash, the release said.

The street sweeper was traveling north on Wrangler Way while Antill was riding south in a dirt alley behind Remuda Drive on an off-road dirt bike. Antill’s bike hit the front part of the street sweep as it crossed onto Wrangler Way, according to the release.

The accident is still under investigation and no citations were issued Thursday, said Clovis Police Lt. James Schoeffel.

Clovis Public Works Director Harry Wang said he doesn’t recall any sweeper-motorcycle collisions in the 12 years he’s worked for the city.

Police Sgt. Robert Denney said the department receives at least one complaint daily of off-road vehicles riding illegally through alleys.

Ken Jones, who lives on Remuda Street, saw the aftermath of the collision.

“Kids ride up and down the alley really fast,” Jones said. “My son rides his four-wheeler back there,” Ron Johnson, who was repairing a trailer in Jones’ back yard Thursday afternoon, said he sees dirt bikes riding in the alley a lot.

“I think it’s unsafe; they don’t need to be riding up and down the alleys,” he said.