A woman who was struck and nearly killed by a garbage truck while riding her bike to work says “if I could go back and change it, I wouldn’t,” because of what she’s gained in life, including the ability to help others with a new support group for trauma survivors like herself.
It was in 2012 that Margaret Harvey was riding to work in the Gerrard Street bike lane when she began crossing the intersection at Yonge Street. A garbage truck cut her off, turning in front of her. The truck’s back wheels ran her over.
Harvey’s hoping a trauma-survivors network she’s working with St. Michael’s Hospital to establish can make a difference. Dubbed My BeST (Beyond Surviving to Thriving), the program will provide trauma outpatients with more followup and peer support.
“I want to help people who are going through trauma connect with people who have gone through it and come out the other side,” Harvey said. “I’ve met people 10 years on, and they’re still mentally in their trauma. This group will help people like that.”
Applicable to cyclists too. Take a breather for a minute and let people on and off streetcars safely.
Personally, I like to stop in the middle of the lane to act as a barrier to any cars behind me who are thinking of passing a stopped streetcar.
An astonishing number of drivers simply sail past those open doors. Some, taking the opportunity to get around the streetcar that has been slowing their progress, step on the gas and pass by like stock-car racers.
Cyclists are just as guilty, if not more so. When a streetcar slows as it approaches a stop, many speed up to get by and avoid the effort of coming to a halt and starting up again. Often they don’t make it – and whiz through a crowd of people.
Someone’s life is worth more than the convenience of a driver to get somewhere a couple minutes faster. Toronto needs to change.
On a clear Sunday this fall, Lydia Lebed was waiting her turn at a Kingsway intersection when the pickup truck in front of her vehicle hit a pedestrian.
The scene remains etched in her mind: the white hair of the 95-year-old victim; the tangerines the woman dropped when she was hit; a pair of broken glasses on the road.
The moment horrified her and left her “even more paranoid” about traffic. It also prompted her to write an anguished letter to Mayor John Tory, calling for more action on road safety.
More: The Globe and Mail
Most pedestrians and cyclists are killed at intersections, so shouldn’t we make them safer?
Protected intersections — a clever way to rearrange traffic so that people on bikes and cars no longer have to look over their shoulders for each other — have existed for decades in other countries. But after they were visualized for the U.S. context in 2011 by the Dutch blogger Mark Wagenbuur and given a name in 2014 by the U.S. planner Nick Falbo, the design burst into the spotlight. Last year, four opened to regular traffic: two in Austin, one in Salt Lake City and one in Davis, California.
Read more: Green Lane Project