Here is the bike 28 year-old Elyse Stern was riding on Friday night when she was hit by Juan Ricardo Hernandez-Campoceco, who was driving drunk.
I would like MPD Sgt. William Palmer to explain to us all how a helmet and lights would have prevented Hernandez-Campoceco from doing this to Stern’s bike with his car, killing her instantly, and continuing on his way without even slowing down.
I would like Palmer to explain to me why, when “one of the key lessons here is prevention,” he immediately mentions a helmet and lights, without saying anything about harsher drunk driving laws. Sure, let’s talk about bike safety, but let’s also talk about how physics, the legal system, and our culture ensures that, no matter who was at fault, motorized transportation will win out in terms of bodily harm, police reports, and a media that still portrays cyclists as outliers and freaks. Explain to me why that is.
Although I believe bike lights and a helmet are important, I agree totally. Once I swing my leg over a bike, I am worthless. My relationships, my work and future are no longer valued the way they would be if I was driving a car. My thoughts go out to the family, friends and colleagues of my fellow rider.