With a heavy heart I have to report that another cyclist was killed today on Toronto's streets. This time a seven year old girl ... in Scarborough. Very close to where I went to high school. CityTV did this news story. She was on a crosswalk riding her bike. Not a busy street. The driver simply failed to see her, which boggles the mind. I am pretty sure you're taught to look left and right for anyone including children before you proceed to go through a crosswalk after already having stopped in the first place to let another child cross.
Many more articles.
My condolences to the family. I'm heartbroken. I am deeply concerned with the legal and subsequent judicial process in terms of reckless endangerment with a motor vehicle in this country. These are not "accidents" They are premeditated criminal acts and should be viewed and tried as such.
Just had to get that bit in about not wearing a helmet and implying that it was the reason why she died.
It's an absolute tragedy of course.
But helmets can make a difference though I will strongly resist being legislated into them, and on extreme heat/smog days it's the mobile furnaces that should have constraints placed upon them, not cyclists.
And I imagine the vehicle driver is also quite distraught, and it is quite possible that the cyclist took advantage of the stopped vehicle to think that she could cross as well - I think I've done that too.
But it is a tragedy.
You know, the 'reasonable' person is me keeps thinking of ways for cyclists, drivers amd pedestrians to get along. However, the truly reasonable person in me, unconstrained by what is 'reasonable' in this society keeps screaming for attention. When I am talking my life in my hand walking across or cycling along any street, breathing in the filth and noise vehicles cause, the planet is going to shit, people are sent to kill, or are killed, for oil, and the death of a child by car is unremarkable, there is only one reasonable response: ban personal automobiles!
I do tend to agree with the last comment, but at risk of being unpopular, bikes are so quiet and they are sometimes ridden by goofs and humans who don't care/look, the bike too could injure or kill, and they sometimes do.
But maybe it's beyond time to ban driving while on a cellphone - there's a provincial election on if anyone has the time/energy to raise this as an issue...
The linked story was repugnant; it cites a witness who claims "there was nothing the driver could do" first and in only in the final paragraph suggest the most likely cause, the satanic cell phone. Bad enough people feel obliged to drive everywhere why on god's green do they not just pay attention
There is an active campaign by the police through the media happening trying to blame the girl for crossing back across the street
after crossing the first time.
that article is disgusting
"Blaming the Victim
Pedestrians/cyclists are often considered at fault in crashes, obscuring the real issue of safe pedestrian/cyclist facilities. Police reports are often designed to describe vehicle-pedestrian/cyclist collisions in terms of what the pedestrian/cyclist did wrong.(1) Seldom do reports of pedestrian/cyclist fatalities, particularly in the media, record the actions of the driver, describe how fast the car was traveling, or note whether the motorist was paying attention. Yet research has concluded that the fault of pedestrian/cyclist-vehicle collisions frequently rests with drivers. When investigating child pedestrian/cyclist injury cases, a recent study found that "drivers leave most of the responsibility for avoiding collisions to the [child] pedestrian/cyclist."(2)
The police also may be ignoring illegal driver behavior. A study of police reports from deadly pedestrian crashes in New York City found that in 74 percent of the cases, drivers were speeding, had illegally turned into a crosswalk, had run a stop light, or were otherwise culpable in the death. Yet only sixteen percent of drivers were cited, and less than one percent were cited for violating laws specific to pedestrian/cyclist safety.(3)
Many pedestrian/cyclist safety projects are aimed at pedestrians/cyclists rather than at drivers. Many cities have responded to pedestrian deaths with crackdowns on jaywalking. In some areas, the response to high pedestrian accidents has been to actively discourage walking. In Santa Ana, California, the solution to high death rates was to prohibit pedestrians from using medians as refuges from speeding traffic.(4) Other communities have removed crosswalks or put up signs prohibiting pedestrian crossing. These actions will do little to discourage people who must walk to get where they are going, and may result in more pedestrian deaths and injuries, not less.
Many safety programs for children focus on training them to be extremely cautious in crossing the street. But evaluations of these programs show their effectiveness to be mixed at best, and some studies show children under seven simply do not have the necessary developmental skills to determine when cars are a danger.(5) More and more health and safety researchers are recognizing that making the environment safer is of crucial importance, especially for children."
hey martino, where is that from?
Publication by Transportation Alternatives in NYC. Sorry. no link available. Had this for a while and I have adapted the piece
to include cyclists.
I had an interesting experience last night beyond the commonplace of being cut off. In this instance, the eastbound Bloor bike lane at the top of Parliament can and does get crossed by four-wheelers going south. One did, and in front of me, despite lights, so "ding, ding, ding" went my bell, with a few more dings when I stopped at the stoplight. A cop car in the queue eastbound musta heard the bell or seen it, because he turned south and I heard "I'll get him for you".
Maybe there's some hope that we will get more equitable applying of traffic laws, though incidents like TTTooker's Geoffrey being run down with bad police non-follow-up can occur at the same time as this.
I'm not sure that we cyclists are going to always be so attentive to others on the road, including kids. I find it a constant struggle to stay focussed/alert/respectful.
I went up on Wednesday to leave some flowers after hearing about this. It was a tragic scene.
My condolences to the family and friends of a fellow cyclist I never met.
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