Another Loss Hits Close to Home
Bruce, via the NBW list, pointed to a Projo article about another cyclist, with ties to RI, being killed.
A 21-year-old Brown University student riding across the country to raise money for affordable housing was killed Tuesday in South Dakota after she was struck by a semi-trailer truck’s wide load as she checked phone messages on the shoulder of U.S. Highway 18.
I’ve read a number of accounts of this accident now and they all seem to tell the same story, the cyclist was doing everything right. She was on the side of the road and was struck by a passing truck. I’m sure this was an accident, the driver said he saw the cyclists and even tried to swerve to avoid them. However, the fact remains that he killed someone and I don’t believe it is right that he should be able to walk away from this accident without any sort of repercussion. He destroyed a young persons life, just starting to sprout wings and fly free. What do you believe is a reasonable punishment?
We’ve tried for two legislative sessions now, and plan to continue this work, to get a vulnerable roadway user bill passed in Rhode Island. This past legislative session, we were successful in getting a more traditional 3-foot bill passed, but it still doesn’t go far enough. While we understand that accidents do happen, it is not right to let this person just walk away. Our legislation proposed requiring mandatory driver re-education, community service, and for cases where there was negligence, license suspension.
In this case, this person involved in the accident is a truck driver, traveling across the US. Wouldn’t it be something to require him to perform his community service by stopping across the US and lecturing to driver’s education classes about what he did and why it’s crucial that all drivers take responsibility and remain alert when they are behind the wheel. No, this wouldn’t bring Paige back and there is likely nothing this truck driver could do to repair the damage he inflicted upon her family and friends, but at least this would be something. Everyone knowing that he must attend mandatory re-education and tell others about his story and the dangers of driving, would seem to provide some benefit for society.