NIH Employee Dies in Motorcycle Crash Outside NIH Campus

The motorcyclist who died after a collision with a Ride On bus outside the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Wednesday morning was an NIH employee, News4 has learned.

He has been identified as 35-year-old Francis G. Plati, Jr., of Stafford, Virginia.

Plati was a patient care technician at the NIH Clinical Center, the NIH confirmed. He'd worked at the NIH since October 2010.

"Our deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends and colleagues for their terrible loss," a spokeswoman said.

Police say Plati was driving south on Rockville Pike in Bethesda at about 6:10 a.m. when his Suzuki motorcycle and a northbound Ride On bus collided. The driver of the Ride On bus was attempting to make a left turn onto South Drive at the time of the crash, police said.

Plati suffered traumatic injuries and was taken to a hospital, where he died, Montgomery County authorities said.

There were no passengers aboard the bus, which was driven by a 59-year-old Silver Spring man.

The accident closed Rockville Pike in front of the NIH in Bethesda for much of the morning. The road was shut down in both directions between Cedar Lane and Jones Bridge Road.

Collision reconstruction detectives were investigating the cause of the crash.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Collision Reconstruction Unit at 240-773-6620.

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