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Archive for Monday, May 21, 2012

Car crashes through pet store on 23rd Street

May 21, 2012

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Sherry Emerson was on her way to work at her Lawrence pet store on Monday morning when she got a call from one of her employees.

“You may want to come down here,” an employee told Emerson, who owns the Pet World store at 711 W. 23rd St. “A lady just drove her car through the front window.”

Kim Murphree, a Lawrence Police spokeswoman, said that an 88-year-old Lawrence resident was apparently trying to park her car when she hit the building. Two plate-glass windows and a door frame assembly were damaged in the crash.

No people or animals were hurt. Police suspect that the crash was caused by the driver mistakenly applying the gas pedal instead of the brake. No citations were issued at the scene, Murphree said, but police are investigating.

Emerson said a glass company was able to repair the damage enough that the store could be boarded up with plywood and locked for the night.

The car hit a steel beam that likely prevented any further damage to the store after it stopped the car from moving more than a foot inside the store. The impact of the crash moved a front counter about a foot back from its original position.

Comments

Jean Robart 1 year, 11 months ago

Why was she still driving at age 88? Where are her family members that are not checking on her driving skills? And if she can't tell the difference between gas pedal and brake pedal, maybe somebody better take her license.

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Benjamin Roberts 1 year, 11 months ago

"No citations were issued at the scene, Murphree said, but police are investigating.'

Can police issue a citation/ticket for an accident on private property? They will only make a report of information for parking lot fender-benders.

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verity 1 year, 11 months ago

I'm moving on toward that age---actually past where frankie8 thinks I should be tested every six months. (Sixty-two seems is a little arbitrary.) I think that gccs has a good plan.

However, that doesn't solve the problem. Without a way to get where people want/need to go, I think many will still drive---how many people drive with suspended licenses now? How many drive when they've been drinking---and think that they are doing just fine? We know that quite a lot do.

I know that my time is coming and it is scary because there is not much in the way of alternatives. I don't even particularly like driving and generally walk when I can. I would be glad to give up driving if there were other decent means of transportation. Unfortunately, with the sparse population that Kansas has, public transportation just isn't a good option most of the time and is not going to be in my lifetime.

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eugunieum 1 year, 11 months ago

I am in my late 50s & have serious health problems that will result in my death sometime in the next few years. I drive OK, but not as good as I used too. I used to drive large trucks, I wouldn't even think about trying it now. Some days I don't have the energy to drive, so I don't. I also doubt that I could "powershift" a muncie 4 speed like I did back in the day. I know my limitations & stick to them.

Thanks

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pace 1 year, 11 months ago

Did I miss the make and year of the car? That could be factor, as long as we are in the heavy judgement thing.

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gccs14r 1 year, 11 months ago

Since the license renewal interval was stretched out to six years a few years ago, I think they should include a road test. And after 70, the interval should be cut to four years with a road test, and after 80, every two years unless the driver has two recordable accidents in a year, in which case reduce the interval to annually. After 90, the road test should be annual, unless there are two recordable accidents in a year, then reduce the interval to six months.

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jonas_opines 1 year, 11 months ago

Whelp, found those statistics myself. And yes, people over the age of 65 drive half the miles annually as those who are between 20-55. 55-65 drive about 70% of the miles of those between 20-55.

http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ohim/onh00/bar8.htm

So yeah, adjust those numbers for 65 up by two times, and you get a feel for how often people over 65 get in a wreck. Which is about the same rate, incidentally, as 35-44 for nonfatal wrecks. But their fatality accident rates, per those stats linked by blender above, wind up more than 2 times higher than most of the other age groups.

Kids, of course, get in the most wrecks driving the fewest miles. Per these stats. But I did find a white report from 1990 (i.e. before cell phones), that on a per mile basis, the youngest drivers had an accident rate of 3.3 times the average, while those over 74 had an accident rate of 2.0 times the average, per mile driven.

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blindrabbit 1 year, 11 months ago

Bet the owners are glad those BIG tortoises had a adequate shell.

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Bob_Loblaw 1 year, 11 months ago

Agreed......If Lawrence wants to attract more people of a certain age (they say they do) where the mental faculties are "starting to go".......we should expect more things like this to happen. The very old and the very inexperienced at driving should easily be shown the same level of caution. The difference is that the elderly usually vehemently assume they know what they are doing.

Flame away....

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FalseHopeNoChange 1 year, 11 months ago

Since Larryville wants to be a warm and fuzzy place for 'retirees' to locate. All 'Frosty Tops' from around the country with no place else to go, should be enticed with 'free rides' from the T.

Granted, the perk will 'hit' Kennedy Glass rather hard with workforce adjustments. But it's for the good of the future migrating Frost Tops.

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jonas_opines 1 year, 11 months ago

That's an interesting find, thanks.

One thing I think might be missing from this, though, is the number of accidents per miles driven. I have little doubt that the most dangerous group is young people, but I think there is cause to suspect that while the rate of licensed drivers stays the same largely as age increases, the amount of time that the elderly sit behind the wheel goes down substantially. You take the average age of retirement, and those people won't be driving to work anymore, every day, so no more commuting miles. As they progress in age, it's also reasonable to suspect that some family chip in (as its been done in my family, my wife's family, my friend's family) to do some of the other driving -- to the store, out to eat, to the movies, that sort of thing.

I would suspect, in other words, that the people in the age group of 25-55 or 65 are the ones who spend quite a lot more time in their cars getting to places than those above that threshold, and as such would have more exposure to wrecks.

Just a thought.

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bender 1 year, 11 months ago

You might want to check out some stats on accident rates by age (http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2012/tables/12s1114.pdf). Drivers under 24 are more dangerous than those over 75, and the 65-74 age group is the safest of them all.

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ForThePeople 1 year, 11 months ago

I've always thought folks should have to renew their license every year after sixty five. While the texting is a huge issue with young people, I have to say it's the elderly drivers on the road that scare me most. Personally I feel she should have been ticketed at the very least. My guess is that her insurance will skyrocket as a result.

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Leslie Swearingen 1 year, 11 months ago

Please do not use the word independent every time you want to excuse bad behavior. Once you are sixty-two you should be tested every six months to see if you should drive. Those over seventy should pay more insurance.

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kernal 1 year, 11 months ago

One of the hardest things for many elderly folks to do is give up the car keys. It's like giving up their independence.

I'd sooner be a passenger of my 85+ year old aunt than most younger people who text, talk on their cell phones, eat and put on make-up while driving 75mph down K10.

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biggunz 1 year, 11 months ago

Duh, I bet she was texting! Tar-tar-tar.

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tomatogrower 1 year, 11 months ago

The bus system is why I'm retiring in Lawrence. I am not going to be one of those old people who keep insisting that they can still drive. I'll sell the car and use the bus and/or the senior center shuttle. Know your limitations people.

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yourworstnightmare 1 year, 11 months ago

I hope this episode once and for all exposes the sexting while driving epidemic among the elderly.

Sucks for Pet World, by all accounts a top-rate pet store. Throw them some patronage.

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somedude20 1 year, 11 months ago

"the crash was caused by the driver mistakenly applying the gas pedal instead of the brake. No citations were issued at the scene"

Boy, if every there was a case for initiative driving, this is it. Happy no one was hurt, rather lucky that no one was hurt. I bet if a teenager had driven through the building, they would have received a ticket

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Rick Aldrich 1 year, 11 months ago

my youngest daughter and i were having breakfast at IHOP about 5 years ago when a retired couple decided to drive into the east side of the restaurant. no one was hurt luckily however the car came thru the wall and moved 2 tables. the guy said he thought he was hitting the brake but instead was flooring the gas.

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alcoholbliss 1 year, 11 months ago

"No citations were issued at the scene, Murphree said, but police are investigating."

Investigating for what?, a building that may have moved a cars length in front of her due to its prescription drug abuse and/or rather mixing of numerous prescription drug combinations? A building with dementia, Alzheimer's, muscle loss, loss of motor skill, and reflexes that can not get out of the way of an elderly who mistakes the gas pedal for break pedal?

I say tear that unruly old pet store down, issue citations and take its pet selling licenses away, because it may be dangerous hazard to other drivers. Let the little old lady go, I'm almost sure this could have been avoided if not for that incompetent old pet store.

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julz 1 year, 11 months ago

I opened this article just to find out where the pet store on 23rd was. Last time I checked, Pet World was located in a strip mall parking lot off of Louisiana.

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Cant_have_it_both_ways 1 year, 11 months ago

And many of you want to ride bicycles.

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Amy Heeter 1 year, 11 months ago

Glad tbd critters are safe. Yes parking lot is strange. I often wonder why they have a curb enclosing it.

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JackMcKee 1 year, 11 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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Jean Robart 1 year, 11 months ago

Yes, though I love to shop for my birds at Pet World, their parking lot is terrible.

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Steve Jacob 1 year, 11 months ago

It is an odd little parking lot.

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thuja 1 year, 11 months ago

There was a time in the not-so-distant past when no one drove.

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bluefirebird 1 year, 11 months ago

old ppl shouldn't be allowed to drive

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OPColt 1 year, 11 months ago

I'd say the cause was more likely because the driver is 88 years old, haha. But in all seriousness, Its good to hear that nobody was hurt.

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