Tuesday, May 29, 2007

darned whippersnappers

Now I know I am a few years yet from Thirty, but I feel old when I begin today's rant:
Longboarders -- who get their thrills on extended, low-riding, speed-designed skateboards -- say they can share the streets with motorists and pedestrians.
Drivers "get really pissed when they get scared," rider Nic Adams says. "They're just not used to people moving on a longboard on the street with them."
But valley police officers and city officials fear the fad -- illegal in some locations -- threatens public safety.
"Some of the boarders come down that hill [SunCrest Drive] pretty quick, and it's surprising drivers," Draper City Councilman Bill Colbert says. "They have to take evasive action or are afraid they're going to hit one of these kids. I'm worried someone is going to get hurt or killed."
Lynn Rohland, spokeswoman for the University of Utah Police, says longboarding has been rampant across campus for years. Boarders often start at the U. and pick up speed heading downhill on 100 South and into downtown.
"This is everywhere on our campus," Rohland says. "It's a big issue, and we take it seriously."

(photo credit Keith Jacobs)

Note the lack of helmet or any other protective padding. Also note that these idiots tend to weave down a lane to slow down and because they want to go as fast as possible (without cars in the way), they ride down steep streets in the dark with no reflectors or lights in the middle of the lane.

I am sure it is fun to ride, but under those circumstances it is incredibly dangerous. Riders get going up to 60 MPH and have no real brakes other than their feet and if a car driver cannot see them (and riders rarely slow down let alone stop at stop signs or lights), they could very well hit and kill them.

Of course, almost all of these morons are male, teens to 30s. I see them on my street that is quite hilly and South Temple all the time, including well after dark. I can't count the number of times people have almost hit them.

If you want a similar thrill, go skiing or surfing. Or go on a private road. Join an X-games type league that closes off the streets when you long board. But get the heck off public roads, day and especially night. And wear a freaking helmet and reflectors. Ridiculously large headphones don't count.

1 comment:

Jennifer Killpack-Knutsen said...

Hey! Over 30 isn't old . . . :)

Excessive testosterone seems to be good at killing brain cells (or at least holding them hostage until closer to middle age)