Saturday, February 20, 2010

i don't understand

how ANYONE could be going close to 100 mph on park street in hartford. ESPECIALLY at 6:30 pm. that street is one of the MOST heavily congested streets i have ever been on (city streets that is, not highways). even at 1 or 2 am the street is jumping. cars AND pedestrians. it's beyond belief more people weren't hurt or killed. my heart goes out to the family and friends of the man who was killed (murdered in my eyes). of course the person who was speeding and caused the death WALKED AWAY (from the accident. he was caught thank the goddess)

Driver Arrested After Fatal, High-Speed Crash In Hartford

The Hartford Courant

HARTFORD - A horrific crash caused by a speeding driver left one man dead and another under arrest tonight.

The crash happened in the Parkville section of the city at about 6:20 p.m., police Sgt. Martin Miller said. The driver of a white Cadillac sped west on Park Street, possibly as fast as 100 mph, and slammed into a tan Toyota Corolla that was making a left turn onto Bartholomew Avenue, MIller said.

The Cadillac hit the Toyota broadside and pushed it about 100 feet, under the railroad bridge to Orange Street. The driver of the Cadillac then crawled out of his overturned car and ran down Orange Street to Capitol Avenue, where he broke into an apartment, a witness told police.

The driver, who Miller said is in his 20s, was charged with burglary. He is under police guard at St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center, Miller said. More charges are expected.......

pic: Police and emergency personnel at the scene of a fatal crash near the intersection of Park Street and Bartholomew Avenue in Hartford on Friday evening. (MICHAEL TOWNSEND / FOX CT / February 19, 2010)

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

i posted something over at my left nutmeg

Avon Mountain Crash and the After Effects

My friend Mark Robinson was in the horrific Avon Mountain crash. Mark wrote a book and released it this past fall. It's called Smoke, Fire and Angels (smoke fire and angels). 100% of the proceeds go to a fund for the victims and their families. If you go to the above website you'll see a video Mark and his wife made as well as a schedule of all upcoming appearances, links to write-ups on Mark and/or the book as well as a bunch of other information. If you get a chance please DO buy a copy and read it. It will stun you in many ways (least of all is the amount of research he did and the interviews he obtained).

The purpose of this diary is for something else though. It's to post a copy of a letter Mark has written and sent to some Connecticut legislators regarding the lack of response by them to the seriousness of Avon Mountain conditions and the lack of reparations to the victims and/or their families.

It will only take a moment. Please, at the very least read Mark's letter.

I'd also like to take this opportunity to say to Mark, I think you are one of the bravest and most special people I know.

a rose is a rose :: Avon Mountain Crash and the After Effects
(CT legislature letter)
January 11, 2010

To: Gov. M. Jodi Rell Rep. Michelle Cook
Attorney General Richard Blumenthal Rep. Kenneth Green
Sen. Eric Coleman Rep. Annie Hornish
Sen. Andrew Roraback Rep. Tim LeGeyt
Sen. Kevin Witkos Rep. John Rigby
Rep. Roberta Willis

From: Mark Robinson

Re: Request to partially right a terrible wrong regarding Avon Mountain crash:
Please do not continue to compound the error of the 1993 CT Legislature!

Cc: The Bongiovanni family media contacts (to come)
The Edlund family
The Juan family
The Naafi/Stokes family
The Stotler family
The Avon-Canton Rotary Club
The Central CT Chambers of Commerce
The East Hampton Rotary Club
The Farmington Rotary Club
The Hartford Rotary Club
The Rocky Hill-Wethersfield Rotary Club
The Simsbury Rotary Club
The Springfield (MA) Rotary Club
The Torrington Rotary Club
The Winsted Rotary Club
The Windsor/Windsor Locks Rotary Club
Christopher Healy
Sen. Donald Williams
Rep. Beth Bye
Rep. Andrew Fleischmann
Rep. David McCluskey
Rep. Demetrios Giannaros
Rep. Joan Lewis
The Rev. Ellen Tillotson
The Rev. Jon Widing
Avon Police Chief Mark Rinaldo
West Hartford Police Chief James Strilucci (sp?)

Four holiday seasons have come and gone since the Avon Mountain crash, four years during which there were empty chairs at the holiday gatherings of the Bongiovanni, Edlund, Juan, Naafi/Stokes and Stotler families.

This letter is addressed to the elected officials who represent at least one of the families who lost loved ones as a result of the July 29, 2005 Avon Mountain crash. I respectfully ask you to consider whether those chairs would have been empty if the State of Connecticut did not:

• Include an explicit loophole for commercial entities in the 1993 legislation intended to get uninsured motorists off the road - a loophole that author Lary Bloom called "an obvious gift to the trucking industry" in a December 2009 Connecticut magazine article (see enclosed).

• Overlook truck owner David Wilcox's 1,136 safety violations - not only did the State of Connecticut fail to run him out of business, it actually gave him over $1.6 million in state business .

• Act faster to improve Avon Mountain road conditions - Mr. Wilcox's truck was the 7th truck in 21 years to lose its brakes descending Avon Mountain. It wasn't until the 8th truck in 23 years, the one that crashed into Nassau's furniture store in Sept. 2007, that the state began serious road-improvement activity.

I believe Mr. Wilcox is primarily responsible for what happened that tragic day. But I also strongly believe that this tragedy could have been easily avoided if the State of Connecticut had not enabled him, in addition to delaying the road improvements that were so obviously necessary.

The loophole in the 1993 legislation was truly egregious. As a result of that "gift to trucking industry," Mr. Wilcox avoided the scrutiny that likely would have kept his poorly maintained, uninsured Truck #8 off the road. And the fact that the loophole was closed within two months of the crash demonstrates that Connecticut legislators knew their predecessors had made a mistake.

As our elected representatives today, you are in a position to make amends for that mistake. It's tragic enough that five families lost loved ones. Nothing will bring Barbara, Chip, Frank, Maureen and Raheem back. But do not compound the mistake of the 1993 legislature by turning your backs to the victims' families. At the very least, the State of Connecticut should provide them with the money they would have received if that truck was properly insured.

On Aug. 1, 2007, during evening rush hour, a bridge collapsed in Minneapolis. Thirteen people were killed. Within one year, the Minnesota legislature made sure those families were taken care of. Are the people of Minnesota more compassionate and fair-minded than the people of Connecticut?

I urge you to do the right thing and make sure the Bongiovanni, Edlund, Juan, Naafi/Stokes and Stotler families are taken care of. Please do not continue to turn your backs to them and compound the error made by your legislative predecessors.

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