One of the first responders to a fatal collision between a cyclist and a truck in Newcastle CBD says the scene was like "something you see in movies but you don't expect it to happen".
The intersection of King and Perkins streets, where a woman believed to be aged in her 40s died after she was pulled under a b-double on Wednesday morning, sits between Josh Brealey's home and the Crown and Anchor Hotel, where he works as a chef.
An emotional Mr Brealey told the Newcastle Herald he was one of the first people on the scene after the crash at about 9.30am and immediately began to flag down people in cars in search of help.
The woman, who was riding a road bike along King Street when the incident occurred, was unconscious when emergency crews arrived.
Police Rescue and Fire and Rescue NSW crews worked to free the woman and paramedics treated her, but she went into cardiac arrest and died at the scene.
"There was no noise, no screaming," Mr Brealey said of the moments after the crash.
"It's something you see in movies but you don't expect it to happen.
"I just don't think the truck [driver] saw her."
Earlier report: Woman died of 'significant internal injuries'
Police could not confirm the age of the woman yesterday afternoon, though they believed she was in her 40s.
The Herald understands she was carrying little identification when the crash occurred.
The truck was turning left from King Street into Perkins Street when the cyclist became trapped under the rear left hand wheel of the trailer.
A Police Rescue crew had to lift the trailer to free the woman from underneath.
Newcastle police Chief Inspector Gerard Lawson said the cyclist suffered "significant internal injuries".
"We do know [the cyclist] was underneath the truck when we arrived and emergency services had to lift the truck off her," he said.
"Any witnesses that have seen something, we'd like them to come forward."
Chief Inspector Lawson said the truck driver was taken to hospital for mandatory testing.
"It's standard practice in these types of incidents that all drivers get blood and urine testing," he said.
"His welfare will be looked after.
"As you can appreciate, he's in a lot of shock."
NSW Ambulance Inspector Luke Wiseman, who was at the scene on Wednesday morning, said the woman's injuries were "quite horrific".
"It was a very confronting scene," he said.
"When you're working in public places and you're dealing with such incidences that have such significant injuries it is very confronting for the crews that attended.
"The paramedics worked tirelessly with the injuries that were presented to them."
Inspector Wiseman said paramedics also comforted the truck driver at the scene before he was taken to the Mater Hospital.
"He was certainly traumatised and upset," he said.
The nearby Iris Capital work site at the former location of David Jones, where the truck was headed, shut down while investigators looked at the crash scene and traffic diversions were in place for several hours while police worked.
Newcastle Cycleways Movement spokesman Sam Reich said he felt "horror" for the woman and her family.
He said he knew many cyclists who would not ride through Newcastle CBD because they considered it too dangerous.
"Our [cycling] community is small and reasonably tightly knit," he said.
"Odds are if I didn't know this person I would know someone who did know her.
"Bicycles are not toys, they are transport machines and people have to be able to ride where they need to go and at least feel as safe as anyone else on the road."
Jane, a cyclist with more than 20 years of experience who regularly rides through the area where Wednesday's crash occurred, said left-turning trucks were a common danger for cyclists in the city.
She said she had a close shave with a truck late last year only a few hundred metres up the road, near the former Newcastle Herald building.
Jane, who asked for her surname not to be published, said riding through the city had "definitely" become less safe.
"It used to be nice," she said.
"Everyone would ride around in there. Now, we still do it, but it's become quite a joke."
A report on the woman's death will be prepared for the coroner.
Anyone with information about Wednesday's incident can contact police via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.