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Four days, two bodies. Is that too flippant? It's probably too… - Melodramatic, corsetted mistress of the obscure
July 15th, 2008
10:46 pm


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Four days, two bodies. Is that too flippant? It's probably too flippant.

Saturday, I passed a bus-Moped accident just as the first police car arrived. I could tell myself the man was just profoundly unconscious. It was a vanishingly small chance, but it was something to tell myself. I simply thank any and all powers of good that I had left Thomas at home while I ran out for some food.

Today was a motorcycle accident at a major intersection. There was an ambulance, but I know what I saw was a sheet-draped body wearing jeans.

I live a sheltered life, I know it. Before this week the only other dead person I had even seen was my grandfather, and that was at the viewing before the funeral.

I gawk at accidents. I try not to, if only to keep from slowing traffic. But, ye gods, is this what I have been trying to see?

(7 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:July 16th, 2008 04:41 am (UTC)

no, it is not what you are supposed to see

this sounds like stupidity squared, because there is negligence all around (motorcycle riders ignornng common sense, car drivers ignoring common sense plus not looking for smaller traffic (motorcycles, scooters and bicycles);

I have enough experience to be a first responder so I cannot pass by an accident that is happening as i watch. BUT I call 911 first on my cell phone so that is taken care of. EMTs can do much better than I, I may be able to stop bleeding, keep people calm, etc. but an EMT is way better.

If I find a downtown job, I might want to buy a scooter, but you are sure to know that I'm going to be paranoid and double careful.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
Date:July 16th, 2008 10:56 pm (UTC)

Re: no, it is not what you are supposed to see

The danger isn't rain or wet glasses or anything, it's drivers who simply don't see 2-wheelers. I've been hit once and almost hit a few more times since moving to Lawrence - in Seattle about the same record - and every time it was cage-driver inattentiveness that was the issue.

Reflexes are important, too, for that very reason, but you're right that it's more dangerous than driving, as any accident is potentially serious without a cage around you.

I was on my scooter as I rode past that intersection yesterday at about 4:30pm and saw the sheet-draped body, helmet in the middle of the street, cycle on its side. That was and is incredibly disturbing. I can only control my own machine and how I respond to things; semi drivers who don't see cycles are even more scary than the typical SUV driver who tries to hit me every so often.

I've learned that the way to stay alive is to assume that cage drivers want to kill me and always drive as if that's the case.
[User Picture]
Date:July 16th, 2008 04:50 am (UTC)

And as a p.s.

we were third or fourth on an accident in front of the co-op that was at Haskell and 23rd. I could see ahead and watched a sports car have a semi-trailer go over the top of it because, probably, the driver was stupid. We were going to KC, we were far enough back that we didn't feel a need to be witnesses.

It killed the driver and his passenger, decapitated them. But the sports car was the one at fault, they were going 40 or 50 mph and ignored the tractor-trailer signaling to turn left from the middle-left lane (there was a left turn lane, but at the time the lot for the co-op was small and the truck had to turn in the normal left lane to make a safe turn into the co-op's lot).
[User Picture]
Date:July 16th, 2008 10:58 pm (UTC)

Re: And as a p.s.

I've seen a lot of semis just assume they own the entire road, no matter how many lanes, and intentionally carve through the path of cars, cycles, and bicycles (especially bikes), assuming everyone knows that semis get to use every lane. I bet it was an equally road-hogging driver in this case.
[User Picture]
Date:July 16th, 2008 11:29 am (UTC)
Hugs. It has been a bad summer for two-wheels. I'm suspect it has to do with more people riding bikes, mopeds and motorcycles to save money.
[User Picture]
Date:July 16th, 2008 08:29 pm (UTC)
It was pretty clear, even without a lot of gawking, that there was a fatality. They were holding up sheets when I drove by, and that was probably a big mercy. They don't close down an entire busy intersection for a fender bender. And, yeah, glad Pari wasn't in the car when I passed by that one.
[User Picture]
Date:July 17th, 2008 01:58 am (UTC)
The director of our maintenance department at work was obviously pretty shook up about the uptick in two-wheel deaths this week. He rides a Harley. He came into my office this morning first thing to talk about both accidents, probably because I'm the only other two-wheel rider there. I hope he at least starts wearing a helmet.

He said one of his workers actually witnessed the accident yesterday.
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