Why do some parents seem to have such little regard for the safety of their kids?
Last Saturday, after an early finish at work, I was up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 9:30 am. The sky was clear and the sun was shining, so a trip to ‘the hills’ was called for.
We hooked the caravan (trailer) up, and headed off for our favourite campsite. After leaving the main highway, we were on the narrower ‘A’ roads. I looked my side rear-view mirror, and saw a foreign motorbike and sidecar coming up behind. I knew it was a foreigner, as the sidecar was on the right hand side of the bike.
What happened next, had my heart in my mouth. The motorbike driver wanted to pass me, but he was too close to the rear of the caravan, so he couldn’t see the oncoming traffic. As I looked in my side mirror again, I saw that the sidecar had two children in it, sitting side by side, who were now sticking out over the centre line, and into the oncoming traffic. The bike’s driver eventually saw that there was traffic coming from the opposite direction, and pulled back in behind me.
Now, to help you understand what I’m talking about, although it was a narrow road, it’s a very busy road. There are logging trucks, delivery trucks and refridgerated trucks taking salmon south, and the tourist coaches (buses) don’t hold back when they see a straight stretch of road. But this lunatic was determined to get past me, even if he killed his children in the process. A couple of minutes later, the kids appeared again in my side mirror again.
Thankfully, there was no traffic coming, and this time he zipped around and past me. The bike had a French license number plate, and the mama and papa were chatting away on the bike. They were either ignorant of the risks, or just didn’t care that maybe the next time they stuck their kids out into the opposite side of the road, a truck would flatten the side-car, killing its occupants, before they could ever see it coming.
With hindsight, I should’ve noted his number and reported it to the local police. Then, maybe someone could’ve enlightened our French visitor, who was playing French Roulette with his family, to the danger that he was putting himself, and everybody around him, into.
By Colin Black
Colin Black is a 62 year old truck driver (and has been for over 40 years), and author from Bellshill, Bonnie Scotland.