A collision between a car and a moped in Hampton, Virginia (VA), led to the scooter rider's death. The fatal crash occurred at the intersection of Victoria Boulevard and Lombard Street a little after 9 pm on December 26, 2015.
Police said that the person driving the car was attempting to make a left-hand turn and that the moped rider ran into the side of the larger vehicle. The wreck happened in a residential area where there are no stop lights or traffic signs. In such situations, a turning driver should yield right of way to drivers and rider traveling straight through an intersection. No charges were immediately filed, but investigators will need to determine whether the person in the car failed to yield.
Turning cars and trucks posed serious dangers for moped users, motorcyclists and bicyclists. Drivers often find it difficult to spot two-wheelers. Judging the speed and distance of all kinds of bikes can also be tricky. Safely sharing the road requires drivers to check and recheck for mopeds and other two-wheeled vehicles, and then to err on the side of waiting for riders to move past before turning. Too many deaths and disabling injuries result from drivers not seeing a rider and of mistiming a turn.
Inattention and poor decision making are not valid excuses for taking a life or leaving someone permanently injured. Any time lost to doing a second or third scan for oncoming traffic and pausing before turning will be more than repaid in knowing that another person arrived at their destination unharmed.