TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Editorials

August 1, 2013

One decision can have tragic consequences

CORBIN — Sometimes things happen for a reason.

That statement has almost become a borderline cliche’ these days.

I don’t always know those reasons, but the older I get the more I’ve come to just accept it.

About mid-morning Wednesday, I got the word of what was called a pretty significant car crash.

As you can see from today’s edition, it was very much significant.

But of course, when I first heard, I had no specific details at all.

However, in this line of work, many times you head out for something that sounds pretty bad, and it turns out to be nothing at all.

Very recently I got word of a possible bus crash with multiple injuries on Highway 90 en route to Cumberland Falls State Park.

One of us headed that way, but got hung up on yet a second crash.

So I jumped in the car and took off — but when I arrived at the scene of the alleged “bus crash,” I spoke with a deputy there.

It was not, in fact, a bus crash. The bus driver had stopped to ask the driver of a car if they were ok — after running off the road.

They weren’t hurt, and neither was their car.

It was one of those goose chases we all have heard about. And I was very glad for it.

However, Wednesday’s crash was a different story.

As I started driving toward the crash site, splatters of rain began painting my windshield.

I sighed, being briefly thankful I had recently replaced my aging wipers.

And then it happened, as it happens to many of us.

I got behind a slow driver.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t pass this one — there were already three or four cars behind the grand marshall of this impromptu parade.

So I resigned myself to creeping along, usually about 10 or 15 miles below the speed limit.

After a few miles, that parade ended with a left turn. But the faster travel was short-lived — another driver decided to pull out into traffic.

This driver made the first driver seem like a contender for the NASCAR circuit.

We went down to 25 miles per hour, and I was ready to pass.

I was even contemplating passing several cars at once just to get around this driver.

But the rain stopped me — I feared sliding along the roadway.

I continued my trek to the southern part of Whitley County, resigned again to putter along as the caboose in this train line.

But once again, a couple of turns and I was on easy street again.

Right up until a woman ran a red light coming from KY 92 onto U.S. 25E south — and this time I slid a little trying to stop pretty quickly since she was crawling along.

Again I was ready to just pop out in the other lane and pass her up.

But again, because of the rain, I held back — but by this time I was getting a bit vocal behind the wheel.

My patience for this stuff had nearly run out.

Finally, I got to the crash site.

I learned that the driver of that vehicle was facing the same problem as I was, except she was going northbound on the same highway.

But she didn’t hold back, and made the decision to try to pass anyway.

The result of that decision left the passenger dead.

I stayed at the scene. I did my job. I talked with a few emergency workers at the crash.

Then I had a few other unrelated things to attend to in Williamsburg.

Then I headed back to the office in Corbin.

I had a great deal of time to think — and I came up with this.

If drivers had the full understanding and comprehension of the ramifications of bad driving decisions, maybe they would be a little more cautious on our roads.

I mean, I left the crash site and saw about a half dozen or more completely stupid driving decisions — and many of these decisions were made in pouring down rain in heavy traffic on northbound I-75.

A woman in a van rode up to my bumper before she got in the passing lane — when I saw her, she was focused on texting on her phone.

A man in a truck cut in and out of traffic because he wanted to exceed the speed limit, although one wrong move on a slippery road and you and several others are toast.

Two drivers from Georgia who looked like they were traveling together rode so close to each other that the only thing that would happen before a fatal crash is someone shouting an expletive.

A couple driving a minivan were passing food to each other when they pulled out in front of me off of Exit 25.

Someone driving a Chrysler ran the new red light at Scuffletown Road — that driver also appeared to be playing with food.

People, it only takes a second. Look at that picture of that Mercury Grand Marquis.

For whatever reason, the decision was made to pass another vehicle — and it killed someone.

Take a hard, long look at that picture — burn it into your memory.

Because one simple decision can have irreversible, tragic consequences.

John Ross is a reporter for the Times-Tribune. He can be reached at jross@thetimestribune.com

1
Text Only
Editorials
  • LIKE IT OR NOT: MLB's All Star effort was a bust

    With the 85th edition of Major League Baseball’s All-Star game in the books, I have to say I feel like the whole thing was a complete bust.

    July 18, 2014

  • THE WAY IT IS: Some local teams can make a run

    Well folks, our Little League All-Star action is beginning to wind down, and I’ve been fortunate enough to see two of the Tri-County’s resp

    July 17, 2014

  • LIKE IT OR NOT: It's been a very busy summer

    While a lot of people would expect the local sports scene to slow down in the Tri-County in the summer time, that’s not usually the case for us here at the Times-Tribune.

    July 16, 2014

  • John Ross.jpg May we all cherish those few WWII vets who still live

    I watch this old BBC program pretty often called “Are You Being Served?” It’s mostly out of syndication — what shows remain can be seen most often through PBS.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0502 Bobbie Poynter So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, adieu

    I never have been very good at saying goodbye — family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, community — for years you’ve had my back and in turn, I believe I’ve had yours.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ronnie Ellis.jpg ‘Uh hummm!’ It’s been an interesting week

    One column can’t cover everything from a busy week of political events, but here are some quick takeaways from last week.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brad Hall.jpg Let’s multiply our numbers like fleas do

    Last Saturday, my wife, Carmen, and I spent the day at the Kings Island theme park near Cincinnati, Ohio.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • John Burkhart.jpg Not an earthly trace

    Just married (1897) and in his late 20’s, my grandfather was determined to make a living on a hillside farm covered in wilderness; much as his father had done before him in 1846  when he arrived from Germany.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brad Hall.jpg Col. Mustard with the candlestick in Heaven

    One of my favorite movies is the murder mystery comedy “Clue,” which is based on the popular board game of the same name.

    June 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • John Burkhart.jpg Now or Never

    A story is told of an old widower who decided it was time to find a new wife. He chose to look for this new bride through the obituaries column; identifying new widows.

    June 30, 2014 1 Photo

Front page
Featured Ads
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide