Sunday, December 5, 2010

Burbling anger

If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you may recall that I got hit by a car about a year ago. It hurt, but thank heaven (seriously) nothing lasting happened to me. Also, the driver didn't drive off. He was sincerely apologetic. He contended that he didn't see me and obviously he didn't, because he hit me. But, he didn't seem like the kind of guy who have made a left turn and hit me if he had seen me. It was his fault. I did have lights, was operating my bike on the correct side of the road and had the right of way. Perhaps Christmas night last year taught him a lesson that you truly need to pay attention when you're driving, because you can kill people. So anyway, I bear no ill will towards the guy.

It seemed like the driver in this instance must be a minority, because attempted hit and runs or full on hit and runs seem to be the trend in the Hartford area (or Aspen, CO where the DA even seems to support cyclist hit and runs). Hit someone on a bike? Get the fuck out of there! Don't own the fact that you just killed or maimed someone's brother, father, friend or whatever. You've got a car and you're not the freak on a bike. Bike misfits rank below dogs, because I assume that people who kill dogs with their cars still might make some effort to call on the number on the collar.

This must be the moral zeitgeist. There must be plenty of people who haven't yet hit a cyclist, but if they do, they're driving off even if they've killed them.

I know that hit and runs happen with car-car accidents, too, but they seem a little rarer simply because car-car accidents often render both cars inoperable.


Schleppi Longstocking said...

People might want to pause and consider what it means when the police in Glastonbury had to inform a man that his son was recently killed in a traffic accident.

Motorists would do well to keep in mind that if not for the sake of the actual cyclist, for others, they should stop to take responsibility. Sometimes calling in an accident immediately means the difference between life and death. It means not having to burden a police officer with what I am sure is absolute anguish when she has to inform next of kin about the tragedy. It means not having to completely crush parents, children, and loved ones with the news that a family member died senselessly.

If motorists can't drive right, they need to at least sack up and act morally after the fact.


Tony C said...

Hit and run does provide an opportunity for the "hitter" to get off scott free. There was a motorist who ran a bike paceline off the road and actually hit several as he did so in Illinois farm country. He drove slowly in front of the damage group for a while, taunting them, and they managed to take a clear photo of the license plate. The police wouldn't arrest the perp because they couldn't visually identify him. At first he denied driving the car that afternoon and the police only stepped up the pressure when the community became outraged. Last I heard the driver who clearly assaulted several cyclists with a deadly weapon is negotiating for a misdermeanor. Bastard!

Hit and run drivers should be drawn and quartered.

Links to the Illinois hit and run: