As police suspected, Sophie Dion, 44, had not been far from her home when she was hit by a public-transit bus in the South Shore suburb east of Montreal.
Captain Yanic Parent of the Régie intermunicipale de police Richelieu-St-Laurent said Dion had swerved to avoid an obstacle on the road's shoulder when she was hit by the bus at about 12:40 p.m.
Many in the community — including Verchére's mayor — said the accident need never have happened, if the bike path for which citizens have been clamouring for years had been in place.
"It would be less dangerous than riding on the gravel shoulder," said Verchéres resident Louise Hébert.
The provincial government has jurisdiction over the highway, also known as Marie-Victorin Blvd. It plans to build a bike path along that stretch of the road in 2015.
"If the work had been done, that area would not have been as treacherous," said Mayor Alexandre Bélisle. "Most of the road is 90 kilometres an hour."
"It's important that drivers and cyclists realize the dangers."
Parent said the delay in identifying Dion also serves as a reminder to cyclists and pedestrians to carry identification at all times.
"We all do the same thing you know," Parent said. "We go for a walk. We go jogging. We go for a bicycle [without] any I.D... You know? Just do it."
"It's very important."