Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Tragedy in Mexico

click to enlarge

Why cars and bicycles should not share lanes. Why we need segregated bicycle lanes. And probably a case for so many things. But above all, a tragedy.

MONTERREY - A car has ploughed into a bike race along a highway near the US-Mexico border, killing one and injuring 10 others, police said today.

The 28-year-old driver was apparently drunk and fell asleep when he crashed into the race, said police investigator Jose Alfredo Rodriguez.

A photograph taken by a city official showed cyclists and equipment being hurled high into the air by the collision.

Mr Rodriguez said Juan Campos was charged with killing Alejandro Alvarez, 37, of Monterrey.

Authorities said the crash happened 15 minutes into the 34 kilometre race Sunday along a highway between Playa Bagdad and Matamoros, across from Brownsville, Texas.

Campos said he was an American citizen living in Brownsville. The US Consulate could not immediately confirm that.

"We are looking into the incident in terms of whether American citizens were involved," consulate spokesman Todd Huizinga said.

- AP


terryg said...

Michael, I've seen this making the rounds in the few online bike areas I lurk in, and it is truly staggering. What a profoundly troubling picture. I really hope we in the US don't stick our heads in the sand (or keep them there) and recite phrases like "that could never happen here." (Which would strike me as ignorant.)

What a travesty. Be careful out there!

aLex said...

my g'd, it's hard to even look at that picture.

Krista said...

Wow... how horrific. I've seen the article online, but that photo gives me chills.

Zakkaliciousness said...

A dreadful shot. It is a perfect example of everything that is wrong with the wackos in the Vehicular Cycling movement - the Flat Earth Society of the Cycling World.

Bent said...

Michael - no. And Zakka too - no. This is not about segregated bike lanes or vehicular cycling. It's a bike race, supposedly riding in a controlled situation with police supervision and protection.
This is what is wrong with a car-centric transportation culture, and what is wrong with drunk driving and drivers who don't give a sh*t about other people.
One might wonder why the driver was allowed access to the road this close to the moving peloton, but that seems to be the way bike-races (other that the pro-tour level ones) are handled i a lot of places - Denmark too.
And about the AP-story: I would think it rather un-note-worthy that an 'american citizen" was driving in an american country. Heh.

Michael said...

Bent - so true, that use of American is something that should be watched. I make that mistake myself and I know better.

I still think Zakka's point is valid - cars and bicycles cannot and should not use the same space, they're fundamentally incompatible. It's as silly as asking pedestrians and cars to share lanes, one weighs tons and the other hardly anything. It's just always a disaster waiting to happen.

Anonymous said...

"cars and bicycles cannot and should not use the same space, they're fundamentally incompatible"

At a policy level this is an anti-cycling position.

It is naive to think that we'll be rid of cars in the foreseeable future, gas prices notwithstanding. For me it's cycling with cars or spin class, I don't have other options.

Michael said...

"It is naive to think that we'll be rid of cars in the foreseeable future"

lol - I never said we should be rid of cars - but I don't want them on the sidewalk, in the bike lanes, etc. Just as I don't want bicycles on the sidewalk or weaving in and out of cars.

sexify said...

In this instance the cyclists injured could have been pedestrians, horse riders, other motorists...

Although separate cycle lanes in the road are an optimal idea, this driver may well still have veered into the cyclists. His driving skills were impared by alcohol and drowsiness.

There is no problem with the safety of cycling. Bikes don't kill people. Motor vehicles do.