Friday, July 2, 2010

Collision On Capital Crescent Trail: 2 cyclists hurt

Here's the information provided by Sgt. Lauryn McNeill with the Maryland-National Capital Park Police:

"Two bicyclists were injured and hospitalized after a head-on collision on the Capital Crescent Trail near Little Falls Parkway. This morning around 8:30, a cyclist headed for NIH moved around two pedestrians and into the path of an oncoming cyclist. Both cyclists were transported to Suburban Hospital for treatment. Investigation is still underway."

I checked in with Sgt. McNeill and asked if both cyclists were wearing helmets. I ask because one witness reported that both cyclists appeared to lose consciousness. McNeill says one cyclist was wearing a helmet, it's not clear if the second one was. (No fault-finding here, just curious: inside and outside the cycling world there is a heated debate on to-wear or not-to-wear. I note in my travels to Germany, France, Belgium, few cyclists wear them unless they are going for sprints or on teams. I'm interested in the issue.)

Police remind you:
  • Warn when passing (call it out, use a bell)
  • Pass only when safe
  • Wear a helmet
  • Do not wear headphones
  • Stay to the right
  • Yield to those passing you

My own analysis:

The Capital Crescent is a great trail. It is a much-loved trail-meaning it can get packed.  At the time this crash occurred, it can host a lot of commuters--so the pace can be a bit faster than say, a Sunday afternoon.

Bottom line: it can get mighty crowded and not everyone's traveling at the same pace. And it's not a biker's trail. It's not a hiker's trail. It's a mixed-use trail. That can make it tricky.
I love this trail, but recognize it calls on all of us to exercise some caution, even when we'd love to let it fly. No blame here, no finger-pointing (I sometimes wear headphones, especially in the winter, cause they make great earwarmers!) but just a reminder. Look out for the other guy (in a good way) and stay safe. Wishing those cyclists a speedy recovery.

No comments:

Post a Comment