A motorist who was texting on her mobile phone when she hit and killed a cyclist has been sentenced to four years in prison.
The 25-year-old from Hythe, Hampshire, was driving at 45mph in a 30mph zone.
This seems pretty cut and dried, doesn't it? After all, texting whilst you are driving is wilfully fucking dangerous. Certainly Kiera Coultas does deserve a harsh punishment; and yet... [Emphasis mine.]
Jordan Wickington, 19, died from head injuries when he went through a red light and was struck by Kiera Coultas' car in Southampton in February 2007.
I have written about the lawlessness of cyclists before and, notwithstanding the comments about careless drivers, etc., just speeding through a red light is an incredibly stupid thing to do if you are a cyclist (quite apart from being illegal): it's pretty fucking stupid if you are driving a car, but at least you have a couple of tons of metal (plus all the other features) to protect you.
Mike Power makes the same point.
The cyclists family said after the sentencing that they hoped his death would be a lesson for other drivers. Yeah, I agree. But there's is surely also another lesson here isn't there? One for cyclists?
- When you are cycling you are a road user not a pedestrian.
- Traffic signals apply to you just as they apply to cars.
- Cars, vans and lorries are big dangerous pieces of machinery moving at speed so you might like to think about wearing a crash helmet.
So, I think that there's a lesson for both drivers and cyclists here: the main one for cyclists is that the laws of the road apply to you too, you fuckwits. That means stopping at traffic lights and zebra crossings when required to do so. Otherwise, you could easily be killed.
It's not a difficult concept, is it?