Thursday, March 31, 2011

A motorcycle driver lost his leg today; his passenger lost his life

A parent's worst nightmare became true today.

Usiseros and usiseras were watching by the sidewalks. Police officers were directing traffic and were running low on temper. The queues on both sides of the road were growing longer as motorists slowed down to give way to emergency vehicles. 

A really bad accident happened on the road this morning...

Further along, a truck on the opposite side of the road was not moving; directly in front it was a motorbike lying on the road. Anguished cries grew louder near the accident site. A traffic enforcer kept motorists from stopping and ogling at the scene, but even he could not distract them from all the blood glistening on the road. 

Somebody died on this road this morning...

The last I saw before I drove past the scene was a man on his knees right by the motorbike, his face masked with grief, his sinewy arms pulling at something, or someone. I don't know who this man is but I know that he has just lost someone dear to him.

---

At the nearby gas station, I got part of the story from the attendant: the motorbike had overtaken the truck from the right side and suddenly swerved, blocking the truck's path. Then, the motorbike's driver lost control and crashed right in front of the bigger vehicle. With its driver unable to stop it in time, the truck hit the motorbike and crushed the two people riding it. The driver lost his leg; the passenger (a child, I was told) lost his life.

That kid is now a statistic... he joins the number of fatalities caused by motorcycle accidents in 2011. Sadly, as the popularity of motorbikes grow, the number of casualties will surely go up as well. 

Motorbikes (and other vehicles for that matter) are not perilous on their own. It's the stupid and inconsiderate driver who endangers himself, his passenger(s), and his fellow motorists. For motorbikes, a lot of their drivers disobey traffic rules; they weave in and out of road lanes, they drive beyond the speed limit, they don't use protective and/or high-visibility gear (NOTE: These apply to all reckless drivers, regardless of vehicle type). Then when they get involved in accidents, it's ALWAYS the bigger vehicle's driver's fault! 

Are we supposed to sit and wait as more STUPID and INCONSIDERATE motorcycle drivers put their and other people's lives at risk?!? What can we, the non-motorcycle-driving public, do about this?

Driving home from work today, I slowed down to avoid three of these fine specimens of stupidity as they occupied the wrong side of the road with impunity. Little did they know that a kid had met his fate this morning on the very street they disrespected.

Sigh.