Police: Teen injured after riding bicycle into traffic

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WALLA WALLA -- A 13-year-old bicyclist was struck by a car this morning after she rode into traffic on her way to Garrison Middle School, authorities said.

Lara V. Smith, 13, suffered minor injuries to her side in the 8:04 a.m. crash that threw her onto the hood of the Dodge Colt driven by Sylvia A. Bridges, 72.

According to a report from the Walla Walla Police Department, Smith's helmet likely prevented more serious injury. She was reportedly taken to school by ambulance.

Walla Walla Police spokesman Tim Bennett said Smith was westbound on Morton Street and failed to stop or grant the right of way to traffic on Third Avenue. She reportedly crossed the northbound lane and was struck in the southbound lane. The impact sent her bicycle into the air, he said.

Bennett emphasized that bicyclists are required to obey the same laws as vehicles on the road. Further details from the collision were not available this morning.

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