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Following fatal incident, Iowa DOT installs temporary barriers on I-74 bike path

The Iowa Department of Transportation, Bettendorf and Moline are installing barriers to the I-74 bike path while a permanent safety solution is being determined.

BETTENDORF, Iowa — The Iowa Department of Transportation and the cities of Bettendorf and Moline are working to install temporary barriers to prevent cars from accessing the Interstate 74 Mississippi River Bridge bike and pedestrian path, according to a release from the bridge.

The move comes after a fatal incident early Sunday morning, May 22 in which the driver of an SUV drunkenly drove onto the newly opened I-74 bike path from the Iowa side and left 21-year-old Ethan Gonzalez of Moline dead and two others with life-threatening injuries.

The suspect, 46-year-old Chhabria Harris of East Moline, faced 10 charges in connection to the incident, including aggravated driving under the influence, reckless homicide and more.

RELATED: Community calls for barriers after man killed on I-74 bike path

The temporary safety measures on the bridge include the placement of large concrete planters on the sidewalks and curbs leading to the pathway as well as new signage and pavement markings to provide more visual cues for motorists, according to the release.

Credit: Viewer Teri Sathoff
Crews install temporary barriers to I-74 bike and pedestrian path

The measures are aimed at preventing future incidents as the department works to collect more information about the fatal incident and creates a permanent solution that also allows emergency and maintenance vehicles to access the path.

In the release, the I-74 Mississippi River Bridge addressed the safety of the bike and pedestrian path, saying:

Iowa DOT and the Quad Cities communities are committed to ensuring the new bike and pedestrian path provides a safe and enjoyable environment for the public to cross the Mississippi River.

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