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Biker, 14, Seriously Injured in Town Center Collision

The teen was flown to Johns Hopkins Children's Center after being struck.

A 14-year-old boy is in serious condition after being struck by a vehicle while crossing the road on a bicycle near the intersection of Governor Warfield Parkway and Twin Rivers Road in Town Center around 12:50 p.m., according to police.

After being struck, police said the teen was airlifted to Johns Hopkins Children's Center.

The teen was struck by a 2010 Nissan Murano traveling southbound on Governor Warfield through a green light, according to police. The driver was not injured and police said speed was not a factor.

Police said the boy, who is from Columbia, but whose name was not released, was crossing the road on a red 'Don't Walk' signal.

The investigation is continuing and no charges have been filed, according to police.

The intersection at Governor Warfield Parkway and Twin Rivers Road connects the Mall in Columbia with the village of Wilde Lake.

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Nicole McFarland August 06, 2012 at 08:24 PM
Another example of how un-pedestrian friendly Columbia is. This cross walk has only one crosswalk on Twin Rivers crossing Gov Warfield. If you are on the wrong side of Twin Rivers you have to jaywalk, or turn around and walk down to the Wilde Lake shopping center to get to the side of the street that has the cross walk going in the direction you want to go. I hope this is considered during the Town Center redevelopment, since it's supposed to make Columbia TC a more walkable/urban environment.
Nicole McFarland August 06, 2012 at 08:25 PM
*I meant the intersection has only one crosswalk
Andrew Metcalf (Editor) August 06, 2012 at 08:41 PM
Yes, thanks for the comment Nicole. It did look dangerous this afternoon when I was out there looking at the intersection. Only one crosswalk, and about 10 lanes of traffic. I saw people taking rights on red, as a different biker was trying to cross the road there.
Chris T. Gaines August 06, 2012 at 09:16 PM
But what good are more crosswalks if ppl are going to cross on red 'Don't Walk' signals?
BOH August 06, 2012 at 09:32 PM
Agreed that it's insufficient, but the teen was also in the crosswalk and had a "DON'T WALK" signal. I do fault the teen to a large extent, but Twin Rivers @ Gov Warfield and @ Broken Land are pretty awful intersections for pedestrians. I've tried running that area, and it's really dicey. It's strange that the sidewalk along Twin Rivers weaves toward and away from the road, and then stops at Green Mountain. I think that along with the Broken Land bridge over 29 and anywhere on 108, that intersection is about as dangerous a place I've run as any in Columbia.
Ann Delacy August 06, 2012 at 10:16 PM
Hopefully the child was wearing a helment and will not suffer any permanent injuries from the accident. I've notice more bikers without helmets than ever before. I agree that Howard County in general is not bike friendly. Drivers often don't respect bikers or pedestrians in crosswalks.
Derrick Jordan August 07, 2012 at 05:28 AM
First, I hope the kid will be okay. Now the pedestrian crosswalk issue needs to really be pressed. I know when I'm trying to cross one where the light is not present (Beaverkill RD out in front of the Athletic Club) drivers are speeding through trying to beat you to the spot. I have almost been run over and several others have also been almost run over by cars that have no regard for traffic safety. I know the crosswalk is not a shield to protect against getting hit, but if I'm already crossing they should at least stop...no matter what.
Greg G. August 07, 2012 at 10:45 AM
First off, I hope the child is okay. Derrick the "No Matter What" comment is short-sighted and part of the problem. The law's of physics trumps the laws of man every time. Many to many times have I had people put their head down and cross walk or ride right out in front of me expecting me to stop. Several thousand pounds of moving metal needs time and space to stop under the best conditions and just because you feel that you have the right of way, "No Matter What" doesn't mean you are not going to get run over. What we should be instilling is that look both ways before you cross even if you have the right of way is paramount. For some reason or another people have forgotten this very basic rule.
Derrick Jordan August 07, 2012 at 11:21 AM
It goes both ways. People should always look both ways before crossing the street and even keep looking as they cross. It's state law that a pedestrian has the right of way in a crosswalk. I respect the metal of an automobile to just blindly cross, but state law backs up when I say, "No matter what." We can talk about physics all day, but if you see a person already crossing the street, you should stop, period.
Ann Delacy August 07, 2012 at 11:59 AM
Derrick, the Athletic Club crosswalk as well as the gym parking lot and Safeway are all dangerous areas for pedestrians. I often feel as if I'm playing a game of chicken.
TinaH August 07, 2012 at 12:20 PM
Thoughts and prayers for the young person's recovery.
Marybeth August 07, 2012 at 12:22 PM
Summer is the time when hospitals, particularly the Johns Hopkins PICU, see youths arrive with injuries due to bike accidents. I've seen many teens (and adults) riding around busy roads without helmets and not following the rules of the road. After spending the summer in the PICU with one of my own children (with another an unrelated illness), I have seen how the lives of families are forever changed when a child suffers brain damage from a bike accident. Brain injuries are serious, folks. They stay with you for life. Look out for bikers and pedestrians on the roads, and remind them to follow the rules when they are blatantly ignoring them.
rlp August 07, 2012 at 02:32 PM
I hope this boy is okay. What a terrible thing to happen to all involved. And I agree with other about how hard it is to walk in Howard County. I walk a lot and there are very few cross walks and many many times sidewalks just end and you have to walk along the side of a road. I know Columbia has miles of pathways but if you don't want to walk on them for whatever reason it can get quite hard to walk safely.
David Phillips August 07, 2012 at 11:49 PM
Legally, the boy may have been at fault, but I contend the driver must have been speeding and not paying reasonable attention.
Polly August 08, 2012 at 10:55 AM
Legally, the boy was at fault. A crosswalk does NOT give you carte blanche to just cross when you want, period. According to the article and apparently the police, the car was traveling at or below the speed limit of 35 MPH. so speeding was not an issue. The Walk sign/signal should be perhaps a bit longer to allow people to get across the road safely. I know many times myself being disabled with a back injury and having to walk a bit slower than most, I need to be especially vigilant when crossing. As a mom, I can't help but feel saddened at this whole thing. That poor child, his family and the driver, I'm sure are suffering, each in their own way. I hope he makes a complete and speedy recovery.
Kirsty August 09, 2012 at 01:05 AM
Kids are constantly playing chicken around Columbia ignoring signs & they're taught this by their parents - there are so many people who cross roads outside of crosswalks. Rather than using the footbridge across Columbia Rd tonight, I saw an adult couple sauntering across the street. As a mom, I always point out these things to my daughter as poor decisions.

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