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LETTER: Big pickups are the safety problem, not low-speed electric vehicles

From reader Soren Hvenegaard

RE: LETTER: Low-speed electric vehicles aren’t safe

I wholeheartedly support Kootenay Carshare’s adoption of new low-speed electric vehicles. As someone who cannot afford to spend $7,000 to $10,000 per year on a car, every time I am crossing the street in front of a lifted pickup truck whose hood is as tall as I am, there is a decent chance I could fall outside the driver’s field of vision, be swept underneath and killed.

This is to say nothing of children or people in wheelchairs.

I understand Mr. Grant’s concern for the safety of the vehicle’s occupants, but they are only unsafe for the same reasons cycling and walking are unsafe: oversized personal vehicles with large blind spots. That is where our attention should be.

In recent years personal vehicles, and trucks in particular, have gotten noticeably taller and heavier, which is part of the reason pedestrian fatalities in the U.S. are at a 40-year high. I doubt Canada is much better.

We should to everything we can to combat the car-size arms race, and vehicles like this are an important first step towards making streets safer for everyone. Everyone has to interact with cars, whether they themselves are driving or not, and drivers’ safety must not be at the expense of everyone else’s.

Soren Hvenegaard

Nelson

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