Sad Facts of Accokeek

Sad Facts of Accokkek

By now you have heard about the tragic accident Saturday morning on Route 210, Indian Head Highway, where a sedan struck 15 of the 50 spectators of an illegal road race, killing eight of them. Here is what you haven’t heard.

The point missed by the media so far: late-night illegal drag racers actually shut down public roads for the duration of races, blocking them with parked cars or flashlight-wielding conspirators. On a divided highway, like Route 210 at the point in question, it is not surprising that oncoming traffic suddenly confronted by such a roadblock would go up on the shoulder where we are told the accident victims, participating as spectators in the illegal racing event, were standing.

It is entirely possible that some victims of this tragic incident were actively participating in the roadblock, standing in the roadway when they were hit. Members of the DC-Baltimore media grumble that P.G. County authorities have been slow in assessing blame in the tragic road incident, but think about it. Wouldn’t you wait for the official mourning and grieving to proceed before opening the question of the victims’ culpability in their own fate?

That thought is not cold; it is simply sad but true. It is difficult to assert the “innocent bystander” status of people standing on the median strip of a public highway at 3:40 a.m. on a Saturday morning to watch an illegal drag race. The cheering, wagering, and drinking of the crowd merely accentuates the degree of their participation. For those actively impeding regular road traffic, the legal situation is even worse. Prince Georges officials are wise to wait and determine the facts as precisely as possible before assessing blame in this tragic situation.

Sad Facts of Accokeek


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