Monday, April 24, 2006

12-Year-Olds vs. Police Cars

My previous post "Sidewalks & Cycling" led to some interesting comments which led me through some pretty enjoyable thought exercises.

Referring to the 12-year-old kid cited for failing to yield to a vehicle, an anonymous commenter lamented, "Does anyone really think it was his fault?"

In my response to my friend Michael's push back about $100 oil I suggested the transportation infrastructure was good enough, a better and cheaper place to start would be by creating more attentive, patient, and sober drivers.

After all, cars don't kill people, people kill people.

So here’s the question that came to mind as I was dodging cars on my way home from work today:

When the 12-year-old ran into the police car, was the police officer dividing his/her attention between the road and a cell phone?


Robert said...

I see cops yaking on cell phones all the time, so I bet you're right.

Anonymous said...

That was me you quoted. I feel so special.

I don't get the math of him hitting the side of the cop car. It looked to be a flat area. I don't think he would have much speed built up. For a bike to hit the side of a car and not be able to stop, it would have to be going fairly fast. It would seem to me, that the bike would have been in the road before the cop turned. Which then, I would place the fault on the cop.

BUT, I am not good at math and I reserve the right to be wrong.

michael said...

You are right. People kill/injure/cause hurt to people.

Personal responsibility comes into play even in situations like this where someone broke the law. The officer was still responsible for his actions. His position as a policeman in no way removes from him the responsibility for right actions.

Whether he was distracted with a cell/burger/jaywalker is just about immaterial.

Of course, we don't know if he was distracted at all, so this is merely conjecture.

tSD said...

I think as drivers/walkers/bikers/mopeders/runners/speed walkers/jaywalkers we all need to play a little bit of defense. There is a system in place that we refer to as laws. The safety mechanism of those laws is the concept of defensive driving. Anyone here have Charlie for drivers ed? I'm sure we've all heard the story about him driving across Nebraska and the Highway Hypnotized lady behind him.