One hundred words.
That all the life of an Orange County cyclist was worth today.
Allen Earl Miller, a 55-year old cyclist from Costa Mesa, was riding north on Temescal Canyon Road south of Indian Truck Trail between Corona and Lake Elsinore around 2:40 yesterday afternoon when a Ford SUV driven by Scott Reis drifted off the road for unknown reasons and struck him from behind; Miller died at the scene.
According to the Orange County Register, which offered the best coverage, no one has been arrested; the CHP is still investigating. Neither of the people in the truck were injured.
It took the Register exactly 100 words to tell the story, not counting the headline. The sum total of a life, nothing more than name, age and cause of death.
A story so insignificant, it didn’t make the first 10 pages of news stories in a Google search last night or again this morning. And didn’t even make the news at all just a few miles north in L.A. — then again, neither did the tragic death of Jorge Alvarado.
It’s only another death on the roads.
Only another cyclist killed.
Chances are, I still wouldn’t have know about Miller’s death if the Claremont Cyclist hadn’t picked up the story.
I cringed when I saw the image of the Ghost Bike on his site, because it meant another cyclist had died. And I hope Michael will forgive me for quoting liberally from his post. But he has something important to say.
Explain to me again how someone just drifts “off the road for an unknown reason”…. I do not think I will ever understand why there is not more widespread outrage over these incidents. Just because a cyclist has lost his life, does not mean this is solely a cycling concern – it is a societal concern. This driver could just as easily have drifted the other direction for an unknown reason, hitting a car head on instead. Indeed most crashes involving cars are with other cars, not bikes, not pedestrians. Getting and keeping people who cannot, or will not, take driving seriously off the roads benefits everyone, not just cyclists.
A great view of Highland Park as seen from a bike on a clear, sunny SoCal day. The LACBC gears up for their best ever River Ride. Metro began a bike count and survey on Tuesday. San Francisco cyclists are urged to shop locally by bike. A cyclist says she’s never seen a rider stop for a stop sign; I assume that means she doesn’t, either. CNN takes note of the conflict between cyclists and drivers on America’s roads. A New Jersey cyclist is dragged 30 feet under the SUV of a right-hooking driver who just didn’t see him, which makes it okay, right? A New York blogger comes home to discover a bike-loving friend has been seriously injured in a collision. If bicycle safety is a two-way street, why do all the articles seem to focus on wearing a helmet? A Huntsville, Alabama editorial urges both cyclists and drivers to use the roads more carefully. North Carolina cyclists debate a proposed law that would limit them to riding no more than two abreast, and just single file when cars are passing. A Detroit cyclist is critically injured when a driver hits him, then gets out of his car to pull the rider off his windshield and remove his license plates before fleeing the scene. Evidently, someone’s stealing bikes from bloggers; just a week after Witch on a Bicycle had his handmade custom bike stolen, another blogger loses hers when a thief unbolts the scaffolding she’d locked it to. Maybe they should have watched this Brit Beat the Thief video first. An Oxfordshire doctor on a five-year round-the-world bike tour only makes it through Europe before his knee gives out. Giro riders complain about being forced to sit down to a midnight meal.
Finally, the Mounties always get their man — even if it’s just for riding without a helmet.