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Little girl is latest Boston pedestrian fatality, in crash outside the Children's Museum

Crash scene

Crash scene. The F150 is on the other side of the cruiser. Photo by On the Channel.

Drew Karedes reports a 4-year-old died at Congress and Sleeper streets after being hit by the driver of a Ford F150.

Police responded to the scene around 5:10 p.m. and, not long after, called in the BPD homicide and fatal-accident-reconstruction units.

Karedes says the driver remained on scene. He posted a photo showing police evidence markers by the pickup's rear wheels.

Officers from three nearby police districts were also called in to help transport witnesses for interviews by homicide detectives at BPD headquarters.

Congress Street was shut between Downtown and A Street for the investigation.

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Comments

I have a four year-old niece. Imagine a lifetime of teaching her cool stuff and watching her grow just being erased like that. That poor family.

Driver stuck around, so maybe he's at least not drunk and confident that he wasn't in the wrong. I hope forensic science delivers the truth.

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What a tragedy. Of course even if the driver was sober and careful, it is wrong for people like him to tool around town in tanks like the F-150. The price of having a big expensive luxury truck like that is it makes it much more likely that the driver of said truck will hit and kill a 4-year-old. That’s not criminal culpability, but we as a society should condemn it and ultimately disallow it.

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People like him? What do you know about him? This is such a UHub comment.

Maybe he was joy riding around the Children’s Museum in his “luxury” pickup truck - or maybe he is a construction worker, on call plumber, electrician, someone that needs to drive a pickup truck on a Sunday morning.

But yes, “we as a society should condemn it and ultimately disallow it” you weirdo.

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Good point. I don’t know if he needed the F-150 for work or if he just drove it because it suited his taste. And it would make a difference. I think we as a society should condemn and disallow people from driving tank-like trucks like the F-150 *unless* their work requires such a massive truck. I had assumed he was driving such a big truck as a fashion accessory, which seems to be why most guys drive it, but that wasn’t fair. Maybe this guy was different. Anyway, we should discourage people from driving tanks just because they suit the driver’s personality. To do otherwise is to accept the increased pedestrian deaths that these giant trucks inevitably cause because of the decreased visibility of pedestrians in front of their massive grills. - Sincerely, A Weirdo

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First, an F-150 is not a massive truck.

Next, yes, there are a lot of people that own pickups because they have manly insecurities. Oh, well. Then again, there is a large number of people that need them. For example, one of the main reasons people buy pickups is because of the tow capacity. They may tow a boat, an RV, horses, etc.

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IMAGE(https://preview.redd.it/my-5-year-old-vs-a-ford-f-150-v0-i59yk8fdj0ra1.jpg?width=1080&crop=smart&auto=webp&s=affa24d34d8f48a6cfce6ba06c8f65d5280f80c1)

That's about a 2012 F150 and a 5 year old. Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/fuckcars/comments/1274vca...

The newest ones are a bit larger.

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.

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You were the one who took exception to their use of the word "massive". If you're aware that "size is relative" then you should be self-aware enough to know that your definition of "massive" is even bigger than theirs (and I'd hazard to say most peoples')...so substituting YOUR definition of "massive" as if that's the norm (for everyone) instead of just for you is just argumentative for no reason.

Also, the rest of us prefer trucks where the driver has a sporting chance at not running over children under 4.5 feet tall (the average F150 hood is something like 55" off the ground).

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Calling an F-150 "massive" doesn't leave much room for truly massive trucks. First, there's there's the larger pickups like 3/4-ton and 1-ton, like the F-350. Then, there are the even bigger trucks.
Massive in this case is hyperbolic.

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but this is truly a strange hill to die on. the truck is massive compared to a 4 year old child.

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Read all the links being placed here.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does facts, not drama. So do many other sources noted.

You are the one bringing the drama.

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I work in construction. Although most people in the field -like other american civilians- feel like they “need” a large truck or SUV, very few trade people actually do. On large jobs, just about everything gets delivered to the site. Even on smaller jobs, unless you are an excavator, roofer or mason, a small utilitarian vehicle or even a small car is sufficient to carry the personel and equipment that’s needed to get the job done on a daily basis. That’s the way people are operating in the rest of the rich world. Not necessarily because they are more virtuous but because the american-style monster-trucks and the amount of gas it takes to fuel them are unaffordable and impractical. In, say, Japan or Europe, the infrastructure doesn't look any worse as a result.

We could triple the parking charges for large vehicles as Paris just did. But in our culture, prioritizing the life of other people and the planet is too un-american and emasculating. Detroit has done a bang up job in selling that idea.

https://www.cnn.com/2024/02/05/climate/paris-suvs-parking-charges-triple...

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Thank you!

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Japan has a wide variety of small work trucks available for people in trades that have no equivalent here. There's a trend in rural areas of importing these vehicles (kind of quasi-legally) because you're right, they're more economical while still filling the need for a work vehicle. Best second option (if you aren't going to get the classic white-work-van) is a vintage small truck but that requires investing in the ongoing maintenance of a 40+ year old vehicle.

Vehicle manufacturers just don't care about the portion of the market that actually uses these things for work.

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The "I need a pickup truck for work" is often (but not always) an excuse for "I want a pickup truck."

Personally, I think several the white collar guys I know that "need" a pickup truck are compensating for feeling less masculine than they'd like for whatever reason - career, lifestyle or some related perceived inadequacy. Likely true for at least some of the my friends who work trades as well. Some of the guys that work in construction have a pickup that is more pristine than any Mercedes or Range Rover you'll see on the road.

What's crazy is that they have kids and still choose this despite plenty of available data:

https://www.consumerreports.org/cars/car-safety/the-hidden-danger-of-big...

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Breeding children in this country is done for vanity and novelty. The pretense that it was ever about love died with Sandy Hook.

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Just wow!

We picked no decrease in gun demand over a kindergartener not getting their head blown off!

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I would argue that these types of "accidents" are much more likely to involve certain personality types who drive more aggressively than others. This person was most certainly driving too fast in an area where they should have been cautious. This reckless endangerment is never excusable regardless of the vehicle they were driving.

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While you're divining stuff that might be right but you can't know yet ("most certainly driving too fast"), can you get us tomorrow's MegaMillions numbers? TIA

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The fact that a child is dead is proof the driver was going too fast for the surroundings regardless on whether they were driving below or above the speed limit.

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… if you hit someone. Whatever the excuse. Period.

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It's well documented that large pickups, SUVs and trucks have a large blind spot to anything below the hood in front of the vehicle. That's generally not an issue when you're driving on the highway or even a higher speed road, but when it comes to driving close to things like crosswalks & sidewalks the danger posed, especially to children, is greatly magnified compared to an ordinary passenger vehicle.

However, unlike driving a higher class vehicle, there is no difference in the license requirements to drive a hulking vehicle with a large blind spot like that and a small passenger vehicle.

So yes, "people like him" means a driver of a large vehicle that they more than likely do not actually need, but also one that they are driving with no required training when it comes to the differences in their handling and the dangers they pose to more vulnerable road users and pedestrians.

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… also because of the fact that they are higher off the ground with higher bumpers so anyone the driver hits is more likely to end up under the wheels than on the hood where less injuries occur.
The little girl did not have a chance.

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Also because when they hit you they hit you higher up the body, more likely to do damage to vital organs and the head (especially for children).

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Maybe, since we have a special kind of drivers license for truck drivers, we should require them for people to be allowed to drive trucks.

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What are the stats of pedestrian accidents caused by pick up trucks vs standard cars? Accidents happen every day with every type of vehicle. The driver may have a pick up because he needs it for for work and you’re jumping to some very weird conclusions

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I didn't even break a sweat to search and find a link for you.

https://www.iihs.org/news/detail/vehicles-with-higher-more-vertical-fron...

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That's a work truck with a bench seat in the back, you can tell by the rear seat headrest.

This is a tragedy and you're fixated on this base model F150. This would have been just as tragic if it was a Chevy Bolt, MBTA bus or a dignitaries Ford Mustang.

I hope this family get the support they need. Truly heart wrenching.

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I'm not going to remark on the driver as a person besides to note that yes sticking around after an accident like this is the bare minimum but other people regularly fail it so, I guess, points for that.

I WILL say that a lot of these big luxury trucks are NOT safe vehicles for cities. I understand that plenty of people (contractors, tradies, rural folks in town for whatever reason) need trucks/vans/larger vehicles as a result of their needs. Totally understandable and fine. What becomes an issue is that the trucks of today are NOT the trucks of yesteryear. Size creep is real and trucks have become larger and taller and taller and the visibility of a lot of them is extremely poor, leaving a dangerous amount of blind space that results in accidents like these.

This is a well-observed issue:
https://www.axios.com/ford-pickup-trucks-history
https://www.businessinsider.com/trucks-are-getting-taller-heavier-and-mo...

A "midsize" truck of today is bigger than a "fullsize" truck of the 80s. It's not even possible to buy true "small trucks" anymore. Ergo the phenomena of semi-legal importing of tiny Japanese trucks to fill this niche:
https://www.economist.com/united-states/2023/04/20/rural-americans-are-i...

Maybe this driver is irresponsible, maybe the little girl ran out into the road, it's a senseless tragedy either way, but something needs to be done structurally to address how dangerous these vehicles are even in the hands of otherwise responsible drivers.

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Without knowing a single fact about the cause of this unfortunate incident, you blame the truck?
Interesting.

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But maybe you missed this comment?
https://www.universalhub.com/comment/967057#comment-967057

Its been here all morning and you've commented on posts below it so you had to have scrolled by. Yet your only comments on this thread are about the driver and not the victim.

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.

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Whatever

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"Probably", meaning the person has absolutely no idea what really happened and is speculating. Really?
I prefer facts.
People did the same thing when the window washer died recently. They dreamed up all sorts of theories with absolutely no facts to support those theories.
You're a cyclist in the city, right? Doesn't it annoy you when a cyclist instantly gets blamed for something simply because a lot of people hate cyclists?

Look, this is an awful incident. I cannot even imagine being the parent. One minute you're having an enjoyable family day, and then this happens. Somehow, I've had an incredibly charmed life and have never experienced a situation remotely like this one. So far. But, when people speculate as to what happened with absolutely no facts supporting their presumption, it really infuriates me. And yes, this incident is way more infuriating.

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Unless they disagree with you or make you defend your gigantic precious.

Plenty of facts here in this discussion - facts that these trucks kill people, facts that their drivers can't see what's a good ways in front of them, facts that they are becoming massive and have been gaining mass well in excess of their performance.

If you like facts, then maybe read the links about how bad things have become. And stay out of the city with your treasured brodozer.

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I like it.

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"wankpanzer"

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...I have a pickup?

Other side of Fort Point Channel. Absolutely painful. I feel so bad this child's parents and the witnesses. Assuming the driver is also a normal human, they are also devastated.

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People need to stop thinking SUVs and modern trucks are safer. They may be safer for the people inside them but they are far less safe for everyone else. Safety shouldn’t be an arms race for the biggest vehicle, this is what happens when it is. Trucks and SUVs are killing kids at an alarming rate.

Obligatory.

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SUV are easier to tip over among other things. They give drivers a false sense of security and power.

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“The Ford F150, the most popular vehicle in the US with over a million sold in 2018, has a front blind zone of 9 feet, 7 inches. And so on, down the line. The bigger the SUV or truck, the larger the blind spot“ https://www.theverge.com/2020/1/14/21065319/suv-truck-front-blindspot-children-injury-death-wthr-13

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You need to drive slower around children. It’s a children’s museum in a busy city. I grew up and spent many trips there, in the 80s there was almost no traffic. Whatever legal or civil implications there are for the driver, he’ll go to the grave knowing he took a child’s life because he wasn’t careful. Yes, when I drive in residential areas, I drive like a child could dart out between parked cars at any moment.

I can’t imagine what the parents are going through. The child probably darted for a second and it happened so fast.

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“Child darted” you have idea if this happened. This is victim blaming.

If you can’t stop in front of a children’s museum if a child suddenly appears you are probably going too fast though.

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I said the driver was at fault.

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We lost our city when we gave it over entirely to the car. Every street should be safe for children but especially those next to schools, playgrounds, children’s museums. Instead we have had other priorities for 50 years now. We need to make our streets playgrounds and public spaces again.

Paris is doing amazing things maybe we should follow their example.

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This is absolutely horrific for all involved. both for the driver and the girl and her family.

The City Council, police commissioner and the Mayor should absolutely be looking into pedestrian safety around the city. This may have been an accident but I see so many cars as well as pedestrians doing very dangerous things on a daily basis. Someone needs to start enforcing existing laws and ticketing drivers for all the illegal things being done hundreds of times per day ( cameras exist at most intersections to capture infractions). This could mean more money for the city.

I work on that block- so many kids are there every day to visit the Children's museum, there should be a raised crosswalk at the lights in that area if not most crosswalks around Boston.

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I'm not saying that the driver is filled with glee, but it is incredibly offensive to equate the horror and loss felt by the girl's family to that of the driver.

The girl's family lost their child. Think on that for more than a second.

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The poster simply said it is horrific for the driver - and it is.

I cannot imagine what it would be like to hit a person with my car, and I hope it never happens.

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Saying "this is absolutely horrific for all involved" puts all the "horror" in the same bucket -- look, they are all victims. It ignores the staggering difference between the pain of the victim's family and the (assumed) remorse of the driver. It's grotesque.

I also hope that you don't kill someone because you chose to drive a too-big vehicle where it shouldn't be. But I really hope that you never lose a young child to a senseless tragedy like this, because the latter is way, way, way, way worse. Incomparable, actually.

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.

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