Thursday, December 04, 2008

More on Savoy Memorial--And Car Companies in DC

Today BBB received a photo from a friend of Camille Savoy, Rob Glick. 

It was simply a depiction of Savoy's bike a short time after he was hit.

Glick would have had to have gone over the police line for this shot, but in doing so made aspects of the accident clear: the bike was not run over twice (1), and judging by the damage to the back of the bike, including the wheel and seat, Savoy was struck from behind with tremendous force (2). 

Again, the severe damage to Savoy's head leads one to believe that he was subsequently run over by a car traveling behind the Subaru. The driver of that car, Michael Passow, was the only other witness to the incident. 

Also, the severe break of his bike implies that the speed of the motorists greatly exceeded the speed limit of 45 mph (since he would have been traveling at about 20 mph).  Most bikes will sustain even a direct 90 degree strike without breaking (Mine survived a combined 60 mph hit.)

The bike damage and implied direction of the strike also implies that the driver suddenly swerved (because if she had been proceeding straight all the while, she more likely would have clipped him and sent him sideways.)

Please email me if you have more information about the incident, at jbenepe@msn.com. 

More information on the memorial: the latest weather forecast predicts a 30 percent chance of snow flurries, and 36 degrees. The ride will proceed if that forecast stays the same. Please check this blog for updates after 10 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6.

There will be good friends of Savoy coming to the event from distances well over 5 hours. Many of them are close, long time friends who will come and join us either in the bike portion or will drive to the location. Again, motorists, please park some distance from the "spot". 

Andreas Meyer will be constructing a ghost bike, with an old cast-off supplied by Nelson Vasquez , owner of Strictly Bicycles (that big shop you are watching being built along Hudson Terrace in Fort Lee, NJ).

Some people may be assembling after the ride at the private home of a friend of Savoy's. For those making the ride all the way to Piermont or Nyack, there will be spontaneous assemblies in those locations.

The ride will be cancelled for rain, but will not be cancelled for "snow flurry" forecasts below 50 percent.

And, On Capitol Hill....

Lawmakers, including our own Senator Charles (Chuck) Schumer, (D-NY), met with car company executives in Washington, D.C. again today.

This was the car companies' second trip to the capitol to beg for money, and this time the bill was higher, $38 billion in aid from us, United States taxpayers.

Now, let's think about this. Chuckie Schumer should know this already since he rides a bike every week. If we spent $38 Billion dollars on rebuilding our roads and highways to include safe passage to bicycles, pedestrians, and other non-motorized transport (such as pedicyles), we wouldn't have to worry about spending money on oil or drilling in the Alaskan wilderness. 

We could also reduce the 45,000 people killed by cars every year, the hundreds of thousands more killed by asthma, lung cancer, and other environmental diseases caused by automotive use.  Not to mention the animal lives saved, and the reduction of deterioration to our natural resources with secondary pollutants, like car solvents and oils which enter our water sources, damaging our water--and animals forever.

What's more, with that money we could build fantastic parks, byways free of cars, and bike parking facilities around the country. 

Not to mention, we could use that money to refuel our investment accounts which were depleted by about 40% when the big banks decided to gamble with our investments.

If the U.S. government does decide to fund those companies, Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler, it would be a travesty. They have been making cars that burn excessive fuel despite progress by their foreign competitors, (a trend led primarily by Toyota). They have failed repeatedly to introduce energy saving cars, or to provide advanced designs in anticipation of consumer tastes. Instead, they have churned out the same massively big, heavy, energy-hoggers over and over and over again.

All in all, BBB suggests that this is not good fiscal policy. Please, do write to your senator and urge them to send those pathetic car companies back to Detroit where they belong--and to give the money to alternative transit.

Here is the link to Chuckie Schumer's contact page.

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