While by far the vast majority of local joggers and runners show good sense and great awareness of sensible safety procedures, there remain a foolish few who almost seem to have a death wish as they lumber along in their alleged pursuit of physical fitness.
Take the case of the seemingly mindless jogger who recently was plodding away in a southbound lane of Kasold Drive just south of 15th Street about 5:30 p.m. First off, the young man, with deep concentration and a pained face which indicated he was oblivious to anyone else on the planet, was going ``with'' the traffic, several feet left of the curbing on a two-lane road that is not blessed with extra tolerance for such things. Runners are always advised to go ``against'' traffic to be aware of its flow, particularly in busier sections.
Further, here was this jogger on one of the community's busiest thoroughfares at one of the most hectic times of the day while an access road just a few feet to his right did not have one moving vehicle on it, in any direction.
Was the fellow consciously trying to draw attention to his efforts, openly courting danger much like a skydiver or bungee-jumper, or was he, in fact, suicidal? Whatever the answer, he was taking a tremendous risk to the point that one misstep could have thrown him into the path of a car approaching at considerable speed from behind him. There would have been no reaction time for a driver.
And no matter how errant the runner might have been, guess who would have been the villain in such a case.
Lawrence has too many careless runners trying to traverse its streets under dangerous conditions as they supposedly try to ``get in shape.'' What about a few warning tickets or even arrests by officers before there are new tragedies?