Eyes And Ears Open

Over nine years ago, my mother and I witnessed a car/pedestrian accident that, sadly, ended up causing the pedestrian’s death a week later.  It’s one of those things that you hope never happens, and then, once it does, hope never happens in front of you again.

Yesterday, it happened again.

I was driving back to Tad’s speech therapist’s office.  While Tad is at speech therapy, I usually run up the hill and over the freeway to shop at Trader Joe’s.  They have a few items that have become family staples (especially their yogurt cups), so we spend the time constructively instead of just sitting in the waiting room or the car.

There are a lot of very prominent crosswalks around that area, and as I was driving back down the hill, a young woman (late teens/early 20’s is my guess) with bright blue hair decided to ride her longboard across the crosswalk right in front of me.  She had one arm stuck out in front of her, as if she was signaling.  I managed to stop in time, but the car in the lane next to me didn’t.

And I knew what was going to happen before it did.

The car clipped her right off the longboard as she tried to roll right in front of him.

I immediately pulled out my phone as the driver stopped, and picked her up.  She was in some serious pain, but nothing looked visibly broken and there was no blood.  As a young man who was with her came running back across the crosswalk, I called 911 and started to wave cars around me with a hand out the window.

By the time I was done giving all the information I could to the dispatcher, and pulled away, I could see an ambulance coming.  This all occurred less than two miles from the hospital, so they didn’t have far to go.

When I came back through the area after picking Tad up, about 20 minutes later, the girl and the ambulance were gone, while a police car was still on the scene with the driver and the girl’s friend.

And my hands were still shaking.  That could have been so, so much worse.  She might have a broken leg – and very bad bruising if she escaped any broken bones – but she’ll recover.  And hopefully, she NEVER tries to skateboard across a crosswalk again.  And it serves as a good reminder to all of us that we have to keep our eyes and ears open when out on the road.  Assume nothing.  Drive or walk defensively.  Be careful and alert.

I would prefer to not have to call 911 again for something like this.

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