Sunday, April 16, 2023

Hit and run or lazy journalism?

– A XXXXX woman critically injured in a hit-and-run crash last month has died from her injuries.

The State Patrol says that 33-year-old XXXXXXXX was driving with her daughter on XXXXXX Rd March 7th when a motorcycle tried to pass her.

XXXXXXXXX ended up hitting two concrete barriers and was ejected from the car.

The motorcyclist left the scene and has not been identified.

This is pretty horrible for the family and I feel bad for her but thought I'd make some observations on the standard of journalism I see here.

1) It's not a hit and run if no one hit you before they ran.  Having ridden a motorcycle for many years I think we can be relatively confident that if the motorcyclist had actually hit the car, the rider would be the one with injuries, not the car driver.

2) In support of item 1), the motorcycle tried to pass here, she hit two concrete barriers.  How exactly did the motorcyclist force her to hit two concrete barriers?  My guess is she panicked and swerved.  A friend of mine swerved to avoid a car that suddenly moved into his lane and hit someone else.  Another friend swerved into the commuter lane when a driver cut in front of him and jammed on the brakes.  Another friend swerved to avoid a car which cut him off and dumped his motorcycle.  In each and every case my friends were found at fault because there had been no contact between them and the vehicles that actually caused the accident.

3) How was she "ejected" from the car?  Not wearing a seatbelt?  

Without more details hard to tell but this just seems like sloppy and/or lazy journalism.  Print what the state patrol tells you and don't ask questions.  I wasn't even sure that I wanted to post this since the family lost their mother, but it was really bugging me just as an exercise in definitions and good journalism.

And maybe I'm wrong.  So there's that.

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