New Month, New Death on Albuquerque Streets

The most recent person to die trying to navigate our streets via something other than a motor vehicle was a person using a wheelchair trying to get somewhere and live early this morning on Coors Blvd. between Central Ave. and Bluewater NW.

As is true in almost 100% of these instances, we know almost nothing from news reports (not necessarily blame news organizations, just stating the facts). In this case we know about the wheelchair, that it happened around 1:00 a.m. this early morning, and that the victim was “hit by a vehicle,” because evidently only autonomous vehicles with no humans in them are involved in pedestrian fatality crashes.

No, there’s somebody out there right now who probably feels PTSD-level awful about having struck somebody in a wheelchair, and there is somebody in a wheelchair who is now dead.

Of course, many out there easily find excuses and blame for this newest death:

  1. 1:00 in the morning?
  2. Probably the guy in the wheelchair was wheeling down Coors!
  3. Was probably wearing dark clothing.
  4. What’s anybody doing, especially a guy in a wheelchair, anywhere near Coors Blvd. at 1 in the morning? The guy must have been drunk, homeless or both. Hell, the driver was out at 1 in the morning, and was probably drunk, too.

And we roll out these excuses and blame, then move on with our merry lives. We know nothing like this will ever happen to us, because we’ll never be in a wheelchair, never be out at 1 in the morning on Coors, etc., and, thus, nothing needs to be done. Coors Blvd. is fine; people do stupid stuff; they deserve what they get; what about that Kanye!

Two quick images, one mental and one visual, in response: 1. Consider the driver of the vehicle that struck and killed the person in the wheelchair early this morning; 2. Consider you’re the person in the brown jacket waiting at the intersection of Coors and Bluewater below:

coors and bluewater

Yeah, it’s daytime, not 1 in the morning, and your fully ambulatory, not in a wheelchair. Still, while I know you’ll never be at this street corner waiting, day or night, how do you think the guy in the brown jacket feels about his safety? What, heaven forbid, what you feel like if you were the guy in the brown jacket?

Oh, I forgot, this would never happen to you. So why should you care…



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