Thursday, September 4, 2008
Schools, bicycles, and cars
OK, here I go again.
With the summer days now a thing of the past, the march of children to their neighborhood (or not so neighborhood) schools has begun. Here's a thought: take a moment before you launch your 2 ton vehicles down the road and remind yourself that between the hours of 7-9AM and 2-4PM children have also hit the streets.
Just this Wednesday, on the very first day of school for Foothill Middle School in Azusa, an 11 year old was struck and killed by a driver. His body was thrown 100-125 feet and he was treated for head injuries. The child appeared to have been riding his bicycle without a helmet in a crosswalk. It's unknown at this time whether he was riding against the signal, and the article didn't mention a crossing guard at the crosswalk less than two blocks from the school.
As reported in the SGVT, the driver was arrested at the scene and booked on 3 previous warrants (two of them traffic-related).
It isn't clear who is at fault, but any accident involving a cyclist or a pedestrian can be deadly. Why wasn't there a crossing guard at that location? Why don't the police seem to enforce the helmet laws? Why do traffic engineers raise speed limits before demanding the police departments enforce the existing speed limits?
On a personal note, while riding with my daughter to school today, two cars coasted through stop signs/lights and barely avoided hitting us. In the 2+ miles to school, we traveled through 3 council districts and never found a bike lane. And how many police officers did I see enforcing traffic laws outside of the school............zero!
And why isn't the Daily Bulletin reporting on the story if only for its public service benefit .................I guess they're waiting for a child to be hit in the Inland Empire. Hopefully, it doesn't happen too soon.