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Driver who crashed into bicyclists in Gulf Stream had seizure, FHP report says

Betty Ann Ruiz, 77, driving 2020 Kia Soul southbound in 2400 block of N. Ocean Blvd.
Delray Beach police respond to a crash between a car and group of cyclists on North Ocean Boulevard, right in front of Gulf Stream Golf Club, on Jan. 4, 2024.jpg
Posted at 1:41 PM, Feb 16, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-16 16:34:26-05

GULF STREAM, Fla. — The driver who crashed into a group of bicyclists in Gulf Stream last month suffered a medical emergency at the time of the crash, according to a report by Florida Highway Patrol.

The crash happened on Jan. 4 at about 6:55 a.m.

Betty Ann Ruiz was driving a 2020 Kia Soul south in the southbound lanes of the 2400 block of North Ocean Boulevard, as the group of nine bicyclists were riding north on the opposite side of the road, the crash report said. Ruiz drifted into the north lane, collided with the bicyclists and then crashed into a traffic sign on the north shoulder.

The report said Ruiz was wearing a seat belt, suffered a "possible" injury and was taken to Bethesda Hospital East by Delray Beach Fire Rescue.

All of the bicyclists were wearing helmets and using lights. Three cyclists had "incapacitating" injuries, two were listed as having "possible" injuries, one had non-incapacitating injuries and three were not injured, according to the report.

Ruiz was cited with three traffic citations — failing to drive in a single lane, unknowingly operating a vehicle while license suspended, revoked, canceled or disqualified, and failure to provide proof of insurance, the FHP report said.

The crash led to a group of bicyclists advocating for safer roads in the Gulf Stream area and asking local and state leaders to bring change.

After the crash, Delray Beach announced a plan to invest more than $100 million to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety.