UCSD identifies driver in fatal motorcycle accident


BUCKHANNON — A Buckhannon man lost his life in a fatal motorcycle accident Saturday evening.

According to the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department, the 911 Communications Center received a call at approximately 4:58 p.m. on July 17, 2021, in reference to a single vehicle accident on Stoney Run Road in Buckhannon. 

Upshur County Sheriff’s Department Deputy D. Barcus arrived on scene and was reportedly notified by medical personnel that the driver of the motorcycle was deceased upon arrival. The victim of this fatal accident was identified as Michael Ray Riffle, age 40, of Buckhannon.

Riffle was driving a 2001 Harley Davidson motorcycle, according to the Sheriff’s Department. The investigation revealed that Riffle had been traveling east on Stoney Run Road, when he reportedly crossed the double yellow line, left the roadway to the north, traveled to the inside of the guardrail, and struck a guardrail support beam behind the guardrail face, launching the motorcycle to the north and into the fence line.

The beam was bent down and partially separated from the guardrail and Deputy Barcus located what appeared to be rubber from the tire on the support beam. Tire marks were also present in the gravel behind the guardrail face leading to the support beam. Riffle’s body was reportedly located approximately 47 feet from where the motorcycle left the roadway. TFC S. Shahan of the West Virginia State Police assisted Deputy Barcus and the investigation is still ongoing.

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