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Engage Brain Before Putting Vehicle In Motion

MotorcycleaccidentI live in the country half way between 2 small cities. One has maybe 30,000 residents, the other maybe 60,000. I do Home Care in both of those cities. Cases are usually 2 hours long and I usually have 3 a day. Which means I do a lot of driving.

I drive on highways, winding country roads, city streets and even a dirt road or two. By the time I’m home in the late afternoon, it wouldn’t be at all unusual for me to have put 50+ miles on my car.

I’ve never had an accident or killed an animal of any kind because I do something I know a lot of drivers don’t do. I pay attention to the road. Now here’s something you might want to consider. The windshield is a wide window that allows you to see as far as your eyes have capability to see. This means you can see everything if you’re looking through it.

Of course, if you’re going to be using the rearview mirror to admire yourself shaving, putting on make-up or combing your hair, you aren’t likely to see the kid chasing the ball that just darted out from between those 2 parked cars. If you’re looking into your lap at your Smart Phone because you’re texting someone, you aren’t likely to see that the tractor trailer in front of you has come to a complete stop at the light. You also might not survive having the top of your car sheared off as it wedges itself underneath the trailer. Air bags can only do so much.

Last month a friend of ours died in a pick up truck/motorcycle accident. Bob, along with his girlfriend were enjoying themselves on a weekend motorcycle trip to Lake Ontario. On their way home a driver of a pick up truck decided he was running late and would make up the time by not stopping at Yield or Stop signs. He was also texting.

The act of looking down into his lap where he was holding his phone meant that when he slowed for the Yield sign, he never saw Bob and his motorcycle coming. Never even saw them when they hit him. I won’t go into the gory details because they hurt too much.

Nobody was speeding, weaving in and out of traffic, but the truck driver drove right in front of a motorcycle going 55 miles per hour when there was no human capability of stopping the motorcycle in time.

We’ve lost a friend, but much, much worse is that 3 teenagers have lost their Mom. The driver now has to live with what he’s done for the rest of his life. I’d feel sorry for him except for one thing. He made a choice to drive a vehicle and not pay attention to what he was doing or where he was going. His choice, his burden to carry.

An accident is an occurrence that happens when no one is at fault for the events that created the accident. Careless driving that causes damage to property or life is not an accident. It is vehicular manslaughter which carries a prison sentence. Next time you get behind the wheel of a car, just drive it. We’ll all be safer if you do.

( image courtesy of engexperts.com )

4 Responses to Engage Brain Before Putting Vehicle In Motion

  1. Butterose July 4, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    You can do 90 mph in Canada? Whoa! That’s too fast for me. Here in NYS top speed is 65. Around Albany, Buffalo, etc. drivers do 75 but that’s illegal. I do NOT drive in those areas. I’m a bigger old fogey than you are apparently.

    Maybe the speed capability is a built in obsolescence? Go fast, wreck car, buy new one IF you live? Otherwise, people (like me) tend to drive them until the fenders fall off, or lease them.

  2. admin July 3, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    At the risk of sounding too much like an old foggy I still don’t get why they make cars that go 160mph when the fastest you’re allowed to drive in this Country is 90mph. they put 50mph speed limits on U-Haul trucks, can’t see why car manufacturers couldn’t do the same on personal vehicles. It’d probably cut way back on serious accidents caused by speeding.

    And they’ve had sensor technology for years now that automatically slow you down when you come within a few yards of any other vehicle. I remember 20 years ago they were thinking of creating a city bus that had that technology. The buses ran on a grid with no driver, and would automatically slow to a stop if the sensors detected anything in front of the bus.

    Those two advances alone would eventually, after all vehicles had them installed, probably cut serious accidents down to a fraction of what they are now.

    And the technology for both already exist, and have existed for years.

  3. Butterose July 3, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    People need to drive when they’re behind the wheel. Seems like they’ve forgotten that. I don’t see how.

    OH! That woman that killed my step-Mom’s dogs? Over $1000 in assorted fines AND license suspension for 90 days. Cell phone records proved she was talking with someone when she damaged that guys lawn and killed the dogs half a mile later.

  4. admin July 2, 2012 at 6:50 pm

    Sorry to hear about your loss Darlin’. I don’t get people who text or talk on a phone while driving.

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