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Motorcyclist Killed in Crash Near Medicine Bow Amid Eclipse Departure Traffic

Trevor Trujillo, Townsquare Media
Trevor Trujillo, Townsquare Media

A Colorado man riding a motorcycle died Monday afternoon near Medicine Bow after a car apparently did not see him and changed lanes, hitting the motorcycle.

Palmer Kauffman, 65, was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, which was reported shortly before 12:30 p.m. Monday on Highway 487 near milepost 29.

According to a crash report from the Wyoming Highway Patrol, Palmer was headed southbound amid extremely heavy traffic as thousands of people returned home after Monday’s total solar eclipse.

Traffic in the area of the crash was moving at 25-30 mph, and was mostly bumper-to-bumper.

Palmer was using the northbound lane to pass slower traffic in the southbound lane of Highway 487, when a passenger car decided to do the same thing.

The driver of the passenger car did not see Palmer’s motorcycle, the Patrol says, and changed lanes, hitting Palmer.

A slight impact between the two vehicles caused Palmer to lose control. Palmer was separated from the bike, and he hit a delineator post as he and the motorcycle slid into the northbound borrow ditch.

The road was dry and weather was clear at the time of the crash.

Driver inattention is listed as a contributing factor in the crash. The driver of the passenger car was apparently uninjured.

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