Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A comparision of two incidents involving cyclists and motorists.

First up we have Portland, OR. Considered the front runner in the US for positive treatment of cyclists.


A Multnomah County Grand Jury decided today that 63-year old Candice Palmer — the woman who told police investigators she reached into her back seat to tend to her dog and then struck and seriously injured a man who was bicycling on SW Multnomah Blvd — should not face criminal charges.

Palmer's car swerved into 20-year old Reese Wilson while he rode home from work on the 6100 block of SW Multnomah Blvd on February 4th. Palmer had her dog in the car and reportedly looked into the rear seat where the dog was just prior to the collision. After hitting Wilson, Palmer's car ran through a fence and came to rest on the side of a house.

Note: the man (20-year-old Reese Wilson) who was injured died in the hospital.

So a elderly woman confessed that she drove with extreme negligence, then killed a man riding a bike and then drove into a house. The Grand Jury in Multnomah decided that this didn't rise to the level necessary to charge the woman with a crime. The comments on articles spent most of their time arguing about helmets for cyclists rather than any comments on the motorist responsibility.

Here is a sample of the first few comments posted on this story at KATU news

comment 2: They don't believe the rider was wearing a helmet. That's crazy these days. Thank GOD that I wear a helmet.
comment 3:It will be interesting to see what was the cause of this. Not faulting the cyclist at all..Could have been clipped when the car went out off the road.Of course not wearing a helmet wasn't the brightest thing either.
comment 4:Stupid Bikes! Stay off the street!

As you can see, all three put blame on the cyclist.
Here is the picture of the car post incident:

Now listen and view this video about an incident where a driver ran into 4 teens at an intersection and caused only minor injuries. Pay attention to the media and public reaction.

The difference is night and day.


Carolyn Watson-Dubisch said...

Sounds like we'd all be better off in the Netherlands! :)

Duncan Watson said...

You not kidding. If I could speak Dutch and get a job, I would be there.