Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Careless Drivers Who Kill: Carnage Without Consequence in New Mexico

With acknowledgements/apologies to
Patrick O'Grady/maddogmedia.com
Bicycle Coalition of NM Vice President Diane Albert was interviewed on Albuquerque's Channel 13 regarding our (BCNM's) distress at recent incidents of careless drivers who have killed and walked away with minimal penalties, thanks to New Mexico's weak careless driving laws and too-forgiving juries. The Albuquerque Journal's Joline Krueger also wrote a very good article on this topic over the weekend.

I'm not sure the usual suspects (New Mexico Motorcycle Rights Organization and Duke City Wheelmen) and reinvigorated allies (The Bicycle Coalition of New Mexico) will try to get an enhanced penalty bill aimed at careless drivers who kill (modelled on the old HB 12) reintroduced during the upcoming 2015 legislative session, given that we have gotten it to sail through the House each year since 2011 and each time, the Senate Judiciary Committee kills it for reasons unknown. We need to figure out a way to get this on the Governor's desk, once and for all. But as one fellow cycling advocate tells me, the Senate Majority Leader, an attorney, does not like the idea of this law, and it always seems to meet a dead end in the SJC.

Maybe now is a good time to push again, given the recent stories of carnage without consequences on our roads. I've appended jpegs of the 2012 bill below. Click to enlarge. Thank so much to Rick Miera for his dogged support, but Rick is retiring.

Note. Thanks to Jennifer Buntz, here is the 2013 bill.

Here are some previous posts on this blog regarding this issue.

1 comment:

RJ Sharpe said...

Thanks for your post and the links. This is an issue that deserves more attention. Sure would appreciate a link back and post to http://pedalfree.net. Would be happy to reciprocate.