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Sad local fatality

Old 09-26-23, 05:56 PM
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jon c. 
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Sad local fatality

https://www.tallahassee.com/story/ne...y/70969540007/

I don't know this cyclist personally, but I've seen him on the road as he was a regular in my area. As the story notes, many local riders come to this area as there are many country roads with very little traffic. There isn't much one can do to protect against something like this but it is a sad reminder that even the "safe" roads aren't always so.
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Old 09-26-23, 07:31 PM
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"The Friday accident is the eighth cyclist or pedestrian related accident in the Big Bend since the end of July, and it is the sixth to result in a death."

Anybody else noticing a pattern here? Eh, I wouldn't worry about it. Get out there and ride!
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Old 09-26-23, 07:46 PM
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I found that an odd inclusion as "the Big Bend" is an amorphous geographical designation which may or may not include this area depending on who defines it. I'm not sure how they arrived at such a statistic. Or what it means.
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Old 09-27-23, 11:17 PM
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Drunk driver. That's the pattern here.
RIP. He could do anything.
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Old 09-29-23, 04:21 AM
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Originally Posted by JoeyBike
"The Friday accident is the eighth cyclist or pedestrian related accident in the Big Bend since the end of July, and it is the sixth to result in a death."

Anybody else noticing a pattern here? Eh, I wouldn't worry about it. Get out there and ride!
Yes Joey, we all know that bicycling can be fatal.
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Old 09-29-23, 05:14 AM
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Originally Posted by jon c.
I found that an odd inclusion as "the Big Bend" is an amorphous geographical designation which may or may not include this area depending on who defines it. I'm not sure how they arrived at such a statistic. Or what it means.
Looks like it could be as little as 4 or as many as 12 Florida counties.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bend_(Florida)

Yeah, essentially non-information.
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Old 09-29-23, 09:41 AM
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The motorist better hope he can afford a good lawyer. Had he remained at the scene, he'd be looking at DUI and maybe involuntary manslaughter (2nd degree felony, up to 15 years). By itself, leaving the scene of a collision where death results is a 1st degree felony, so he could see up to 30 years just for that.
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Old 09-29-23, 10:15 AM
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How hard of an impact to impale the frame to the grill?? Horrible,
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Old 09-29-23, 09:50 PM
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Accidents (unintentional collisions) are one thing, but hit and run is something else entirely. People leave the scene of accidents because the specific circumstances have more serious consequences (to themselves) than a simple accident would.

Often folks run, because waiting would risk a DWI, no insurance, or other compounding charge that they cannot afford. For these folks, ie. someone who's been drinking, the possible penalty if caught later, which isn't assured, is less that what they face now. Essentially the law says its better to run and take your chances, than to accept responsibility now.

Hit and run is on the rise big time, because there's no effective deterrent, and that has to be change. IMO there's no magic bullet, but one step might be to change the law so the penalty for leaving the scene exceeds that for the worst possible that MIGHT apply if one stays. That would remove the incentive to run, and provides incentives to stay. Ie. leave the scene and getting caught would be treated as DWI with injury, meaning loss of license at the very minimum, and possible jail time to boot.
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Old 10-05-23, 01:03 AM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY
Hit and run is on the rise big time, because there's no effective deterrent, and that has to be change. IMO there's no magic bullet, but one step might be to change the law so the penalty for leaving the scene exceeds that for the worst possible that MIGHT apply if one stays. That would remove the incentive to run, and provides incentives to stay. Ie. leave the scene and getting caught would be treated as DWI with injury, meaning loss of license at the very minimum, and possible jail time to boot.
This makes zero sense. It's not the case that a driver who runs and is later caught has all the charges pursuant to the crash dropped and replaced by a 'leaving the scene' charge. The hit-and-run charge is just added to whatever other charges apply.

The problem is not the law, the problem is that we have no one enforcing the law. Police are all on strike, and refusing to work, which is a fireable offense everywhere and a crime in many places. In Chicago, for example, the arrest rate -- not conviction rate, just the percentage of hit-and-runs where the cops can even be bothered to find the perpetrator -- is 0.8%. And most other municipalities are not much, if any, better. More than 99 out of every 100 drivers who run after hitting someone are never even arrested. In many cases, even though the police are provided with sufficient information to find the offender, they cannot be bothered to do so.

Illinois is a perfect example of this, by the way, since it has already adopted your suggestion. In Illinois, leaving the scene of a fatal crash is a Class 1 felony ( eg 2nd-degree murder and criminal sexual assault, punished by 4 to 15 years ) -- which is as-severe as vehicular crimes can get -- and leaving a personal-injury crash is a Class 2 felony ( as are kidnapping, arson, robbery, and burglary, 3 to 7 years ) yet this does nothing to dissuade drivers from running, because there's almost no chance that any cops will even look for them ( unless they hit a cop writing a traffic ticket, in which case the cops will lift every stone to find the perpetrator ).

Furthermore, most district attorneys prefer to keep dangerous drivers on the road, rather then send them to jail.

It really doesn't matter what laws we write, when the people enforcing them are either incompetent or actively subverting their professional responsibility to the public. Probably the only way to fix this would be to start throwing cops and district attorneys in prison, but obviously, that's nearly impossible.

Last edited by TC1; 10-05-23 at 01:31 AM.
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Old 10-05-23, 04:50 AM
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Originally Posted by TC1
This makes zero sense. It's not the case that a driver who runs and is later caught has all the charges pursuant to the crash dropped and replaced by a 'leaving the scene' charge. The hit-and-run charge is just added to whatever other charges apply.
That would be the case in theory, but as a practical matter DWI is virtually impossible to prove after a few hours because the BAC evidence is metabolized. Likewise, it can be difficult to provably put a specific driver into the seat at the time of the crash.

I'm not arguing that stiffer penalties are a magic bullet, but it makes sense to at least disincentivize leaving the scene.
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Old 10-05-23, 07:59 AM
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Recall a case many years back where a hit and run driver arrested an hour or so later escaped prosecution for that offense claiming he had the drinks after he got home. Said he thought he hit an animal and pounded a few when he got home because he was shaken up by the accident. They couldn't really prove that wasn't the case.
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Old 10-05-23, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by jon c.
Recall a case many years back where a hit and run driver arrested an hour or so later escaped prosecution for that offense claiming he had the drinks after he got home. Said he thought he hit an animal and pounded a few when he got home because he was shaken up by the accident. They couldn't really prove that wasn't the case.
Well, the blame for that lies with those incompetent legislators. In civilized states, it is illegal to kill someone with your motor vehicle -- sober or otherwise. For example, that's called "reckless homicide" in Illinois. In other states, it is called "vehicular manslaughter". And "civilized states" even includes Missouri, so if your (general) state is behind even it, that's quite embarrassing.

Much like ignorance of the law is not a valid defense, "I had no idea that a human being was under my car" isn't, either. In fact, Florida makes that explicit:

Originally Posted by https://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2023/0782.071
782.071 Vehicular homicide.—“Vehicular homicide” is the killing of a human being, or the killing of an unborn child by any injury to the mother, caused by the operation of a motor vehicle by another in a reckless manner likely to cause the death of, or great bodily harm to, another.
(1) Vehicular homicide is:
(a) A felony of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084.
(b) A felony of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082, s. 775.083, or s. 775.084, if:
1. At the time of the accident, the person knew, or should have known, that the accident occurred; and
2. The person failed to give information and render aid as required by s. 316.062.

This paragraph does not require that the person knew that the accident resulted in injury or death.

Last edited by TC1; 10-05-23 at 10:09 AM. Reason: clarifcations
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Old 10-05-23, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY
That would be the case in theory, but as a practical matter DWI is virtually impossible to prove after a few hours because the BAC evidence is metabolized.
As noted previously, this doesn't matter in civilized states where killing someone with a vehicle is illegal, even while sober.

Originally Posted by FBinNY
Likewise, it can be difficult to provably put a specific driver into the seat at the time of the crash.
This also doesn't matter unless they're reporting the vehicle stolen.

Originally Posted by FBinNY
I'm not arguing that stiffer penalties are a magic bullet, but it makes sense to at least disincentivize leaving the scene.
And as explained, this has already been done in places with even semi-competent legislators (which does not include New York State, whose laws are comical mess and an embarrassment to every resident) and it has zero effect due to the dereliction of duty by cops and prosecutors.

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