Just another day in the city; a cabbie gets in an argument with a bike courier. Happens everywhere, but in this New York City occurrence, the cabbie says the bike courier was banging on his car and screaming at him, and tells the Post “I suddenly felt like I had to get out of there. It was becoming a bad situation.”
Others tell a different story, as one eyewitness told Fox News,
“[There] was a man riding along this way on his bicycle with a backpack and he got picked up by the cabbie and was thrown up on the hood and up on his windshield. The cab really accelerated at a great speed. We couldn’t believe it.
Unfortunately there was someone in the way; a 23 year old British tourist, Sian Green. She was just standing by the road eating a hot dog and the taxi pinned her against what looks like one of those anti-terrorist marble bollard things in this photo on Huffpo. The eyewitness continues:
It smashed into the barrier here. There was a woman — maybe a few women — that were standing there. It just nailed her.”
So we have a courier with anger management issues and a rap sheet with 22 arrests, a cabbie who was given a licence even though he had a record of moving violations including " running a red light, speeding, improper turn and use of a bus lane."
This story was going to be about the need for decent bike infrastructure to separate different modes. But in fact, the cabbie actually blames Bloomberg and bike lanes in the Post.
“A lot of bikers disregard the bike lanes and drive wherever they want. The city wastes a lot of money by giving them all these bike lanes, and for what? Honestly, I have no problem with bikers. They should just stay in their lane and I’ll stay in mine.”
The Post is probably delighted to print his ignorant views on bike infrastructure, but a protected bike lane on the left side of Sixth Avenue might have meant Himon would have been stopped by a bell bollard after a few feet, and Sian Green might still be enjoying her first trip to New York.
The cab driver has not been charged. The whole thing is a tragedy of the kind we have seen again and again, the result of road rage in both drivers and cyclists. This time, an innocent third party gets the brunt of it. Separated lanes could have kept all these people apart.