According to the recent news, another BC teen has been killed by a vehicle while long boarding.
This teen was apparently riding adjacent to his school, shortly after school, and reportedly he was not wearing a helmet.
While even the best helmets can’t prevent all injuries and deaths in a conflict between a boarder and a vehicle (or a motorcycle or bicycle for that matter), without engineering and medical evidence, all we do is speculate that with a helmet, his chances of survival would have been better. While we don’t know if it made a difference in this case, safety suggestions for longboard and skateboard riders would include wearing helmets and reflective garments and riding only in well lit areas, off the portion of the roadway travelled by cars.
For drivers there are vital lessons too. Areas near schools are always well used by students, especially before and after school hours. Regardless of the speed limit, drivers need to exercise caution when driving near schools, pay attention to their speed, and keep a close lookout for children who may be on or near the roadway.
Remember posted speed limits are the maximum allowed for ideal travel conditions. If the conditions are not ideal, and include darkness, rain, fog, or children on the roadway, drivers have a heightened obligation to slow down and keep a careful lookout for children.
The recent death caused by the collision between the long boarder and vehicle will have a life long impact on the family of the deceased teen and the driver.
We have seen many cases involving collisions between riders and vehicles. Every case is different but they share two common factors: they involve great suffering for those involved and are usually preventable.