(Actually, I am going to be talking mostly about one of the comments from a reader.)
Over the weekend, there was a horrible, fatal accident in San Bernardino where a woman was rear-ended on the freeway by a drunk driver going over 120 miles per hour. She had two people in the car with her, but she was the only fatality. The driver of the other car (the drunk person) survived. The story was pretty short, mostly a retelling of the facts of the accident.
Follows is one of the comments on the story (excerpt):
LAT - not to be morbid, but for people who want to know which cars are safer, not just what NHTSA or IIHS says, how about publishing photos of the vehicles and who was sitting where in each?
Posted by: My Next Car
December 20, 2009 at 10:53 PM
My first reaction was, hell yes, this is morbid. This person is basically asking for diagrams, with circles and arrows indicating the victim's position in the car, so that readers can take this into consideration when buying a new car. "Hmm... the driver of this [Unnamed Make and Model] died but the passenger survived..."
Then I thought - well, maybe just showing a photo of the accident...? Wouldn't it be like those totalled cars they always put up around the local community colleges during the holidays? I think Mothers Against Drunk Driving is responsible for those displays. Now, thinking about it this way, I think it's a great idea. The LA Times should post the photos. I don't know about the idea of using it for car buying data, though (what if it's an older car, for example) but a big color photograph might have some impact (no pun intended) on people.
Anyway, it's a sad story. A lady died because some jerk got in their 2009 Acura after drinking and got that car up to 120 miles per hour (some of the other comments on the story were related to the speed and why vehicles need to go that fast. I don't know about that, but I think it's more important to wonder why assholes need to drink and drive).
So now I preach:
Don't just think about this stuff at the holidays. Drinking and driving is probably the stupidest thing you could possibly do. The drunk person in this story will be charged with gross vehicular manslaughter, driving while intoxicated and causing the death of another, and live the rest of his or her life with this on their conscience. Personally, I don't think I could live with myself.