Cyclists And Drivers Share Road Responsibility

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Editor:

I am writing this letter in response to "Your View" found on page 4 of the Payson Roundup regarding the bike versus vehicle accident that took place on Highway 260 in front of Jiffy Lube last Monday.

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Late Monday afternoon a car and bike collided on East Highway 260 in front of Jiffy Lube. The accident is still under investigation by the Payson Police Department, so no citations have been issued. The 14-year-old boy on the bicycle was transported to Payson Regional Medical Center, but had not sustained serious injuries, said Commander Don Engler of the PPD. Engler said witnesses saw the youngster riding back and forth in the crosswalk at that location, doing ‘wheelies,' which may have been a contributing factor.

While your article was a good reminder to parents of those children who ride bikes and to those of us who drive vehicles that everyone needs to be alert to pedestrian and bicycle traffic, the scenario that you wrote about does not speak the truth of the actual facts.

I am the parent of the responsible college adult who was driving that car and I am appalled at the finger pointing without the facts in your article so here's "my view".

Once again the innocent are at fault? While I am very glad that the young person on the bike was not injured, this driver was traumatized by what occurred. Your allegations have made him feel even guiltier by what you have written in this article. According to the officer on scene, the driver of the car was the victim not the bicyclist. To add even more facts, one of the witnesses that stopped at the scene stated that he almost hit this same bicyclist just a few minutes before this accident.

What about making the bicyclist take responsibility? What about them "taking caution" for riding irresponsibly? These kids on bicycles need to also be made aware of the laws when riding their bicycles on the roadway. I thought when riding a bicycle and crossing the street that you were supposed to get off the bike and push it across? Had this been the case instead of riding the bike out into traffic, this accident may not have even occurred.

I think it's time that bicyclist's begin to take some responsibility for their safety as well as that of motorists sharing the same roadway.

Terri Morrell, Payson

Editor's note: Our editorial did not assign fault. We agree with Ms. Morrell that cyclists also must be responsible on the road, that's why the beginning of our editorial addressing road safety began with the phrase, "the accident is a serious reminder that we all must use extra caution on the road these days -- motorists and cyclists alike."

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