Rachael from the Sideview

Rolling around the county

Sharing really does mean caring

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If you know me personally, you’ve been hearing me complain constantly, I mean constantly, about my noisy upstairs neighbors.

They’re 20 years old. They’re 2 of them. That makes them annoying times two. Which means I’m complaining times two. My poor boyfriend.

My poor mother.

My poor landlords! (No, scratch that, they don’t get any sympathy.)

It all comes down to this: you get your apartment, I get mine. But we share the building.

The same, my friends, is especially true for the road.

Sunday, I witnessed the immediate aftermath of a pretty serious accident on Route 1 in Greenwich between a Toyota FJ Cruiser and a man on a bicycle. I take pictures of everything from my food to my favorite cars, but this was one thing I didn’t feel right about photographing. (Evidently neither did the Greenwich Time because they were not at the scene. When asked via Twitter the victim’s condition, they replied “No word on it yet.”)

But just to give you an idea, this is a Toyota FJ Cruiser:

And this is a bicycle:

Photo courtesy: downtheroad.org

Personally, if I had to be in a collision involving one of these sets of wheels, my pick is on the FJ. (That’s actually the only circumstance under which I’d pick an FJ, but that’s irrelevant here).

I didn’t see the accident so I don’t know the specifics of who caused what or who was going where, but I happened upon it just after it occurred.

This is the best way I can describe the scene, which is not to be taken scientifically because I’m just a bystander. But this is what I saw:

You will notice the man is lying behind the driver side rear tire of the FJ Cruiser, although I don’t think he was run over. He was lying on his stomach with one arm pinned underneath him and he wasn’t moving.

Police, firefighters and an ambulance arrived on scene within minutes and quickly swept the situation up and got the man into the ambulance. As of yet, I have no information on the cause of the accident or the condition of the cyclist. It seemed that the driver received a citation. Basically I’m building you up to let you down: I know nothing.

This raises a very important point that’s A. really effing obvious and B. so easy to forget: operating a 2,000+ pound metal object with enough power to project itself around 100 miles per hour is a really big deal.

Driving, especially on local roads, doesn’t just mean getting to Starbucks before the morning rush, it means looking out for pedestrians, cyclists included. And if it’s a beautiful, warm, sunny Sunday morning, you can kind of count that in Greenwich it’s going to be nothing but Ferraris and cyclists out on morning rides. 

Without knowing the cause of the accident, I put no blame on the Toyota driver. However, being in a car, an SUV no less, puts him at a distinct advantage (duh). This post isn’t to lecture everyone on the obvious. It’s natural to get distracted and impossible to see everything all at once. Accidents happen every day and they always will.

It’s just a friendly reminder to appreciate the magnitude of power your vehicle presents and that on the roads, just like in my apartment building: not everything belongs to you. A little consideration goes a long way.

If you have any word on the cyclist’s condition, please post a comment below.

In the meantime, happy alert-motoring.

RPW

Rachael Workman

2 Responses

  1. I just want to go to the store! says:

    People on bicycles are annoying and oblivious morons. From the annoying weekend guy who reaches a top speed of 30mph, puts on his aerodynamic helmet, sunglasses, colorful shorts and matching colorful shirt and doubles up or even triples up with a whole crew of his equally annoying “buddies”… to the casual oblivious old guy or lady with a front wire basket with empty plastic bags blowing off the sides. 9 times out of 10 there is no bike lane on any road they travel..or travers or cruze or whatever the hell their point is. They both just peddle along in the right most lane… lazily drifting into traffic, annoying drivers in the actual right lane, who in turn annoy drivers in the lane to their left and so on. The roads are not Your oyster; You are not a unique snowflake. Meet up and go to a park to get your pedal fix whether on a track or even a purpose built “bike path”. Or, be a man and buy a mountain bike and go bother the squirrels daily commute. Based on your diagram, it seems moron on a bike was probably driving too damn fast to stop in time for moron in FJ to complete his turn on a non traffic light corner. Also, whoever drives a monster box FJ Cruiser with its massive “I can only see right in front of me” blind spots deserves everything they hit. The title of this post should have been “When Morons Collide”.

  2. Rush L. Workman says:

    Rachael, Nicely done. Glad you are back. I for one miss you. Sure would like to know details.

    My experience with cyclist has not been good. Sometime I think they dare you to hit them, and don’t think any traffic rules apply to them. When I was riding, I was always told, right, wrong, and with or without giving “the finger” you are never going to win with a car. Share the road is a good thought for all, anytime.

    Sure hope he is ok. Something like that is always a lose-lose situation for all .