crime

10-year-old boy on bike hit and killed by car; driver arrested

27 Comments

Police in Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, have arrested a 53-year-old woman on suspicion of dangerous driving resulting in death after she hit and killed a 10-year-old boy riding a bicycle.

According to police, the incident occurred at around 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Fuji TV reported. Police said the boy was riding his bike across a street at a Y-shaped point where two roads merge into one when he was hit by a car driven by Yuko Sakagami, a nursery school worker. He was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

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27 Comments
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Poor woman.

-9 ( +10 / -19 )

Poor woman.

Are you insane? Poor child and his family.

15 ( +22 / -7 )

I don't know how many of these articles I have had to read but why are helmets still not compulsory in Japan.

If the boy was wearing a helmet it may have saved his life.

Also I believe that a bicycle riders licence should be mandatory for all to be allowed to ride a bicycle, exceptions for people with other vehicle licences however both kids and adults should learn the correct way to ride a bicycle and to follow the laws for riding a bicycle on the road as you are not just a pedestrian bicycles can hit people who are walking I recently read where a cyclist killed a walker while riding his bicycle in the UK

-2 ( +12 / -14 )

Proper education and training should be a requirement for all children who want to ride bicycles, make them take some responsibility for their own safety, teach them the dangers of using the road.

Not blaming the kid but how often do we see people on bikes making bad decisions ....................just saying

2 ( +10 / -8 )

This story lacks loads of information. Did he decide to cross on a whim?, Was she on her phone?, more info.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

Agree totally with point of view... absolutely no way any of us here can point the finger of blame either at the woman or the kid. However, I totally agree with what has been said about a total lack of bicycle safety education here. I have a 9 year old son and not once has he ever had any safety education at school. It has been down to me to teach him and even now I will not let him ride without me, the roads are just way too dangerous. No sidewalks, idiots driving through lights, more morons on their phones.....and that's just the cyclists...don't want to start on the lunacy I see from car drivers. I am surprised the accident rate for cyclists isn't higher.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

While this is a tragic outcome, we do not know the circumstances. This is one occasion where the police routinely arrest the driver regardless of blame.

fwiw, I was in Aichi on Sunday morning but it was windy with torrential rain. I saw a bloke trying to ride a bicycle through it while holding an umbrella, which struck me as foolish and extremely dangerous.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Not blaming the kid but how often do we see people on bikes making bad decisions ....................just saying

jeez - we’re talking about a kid here. Kids will always make mistakes. It’s part of being a kid and learning about the world. They should never have to pay with their lives for their mistake. Instead of blaming the victim, better to put the blame on a society that puts the convenience of drivers over the lives of children - as 43% of car trips in Japan are less than 5 kms(so often unnecessary) and traffic violence is one of the leading cause of death of kids.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Such a tragedy.

And this kind of thing is so avoidable. When will the authorities introduce greater road safety awareness legislation and also make cycling helmets compulsory?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

yokohamaridesToday 06:26 pm JST

Not blaming the kid but how often do we see people on bikes making bad decisions ....................just saying

> jeez - we’re talking about a kid here. Kids will always make mistakes. It’s part of being a kid and learning about the world. They should never have to pay with their lives for their mistake. Instead of blaming the victim, better to put the blame on a society that puts the convenience of drivers over the lives of children - as 43% of car trips in Japan are less than 5 kms(so often unnecessary) and traffic violence is one of the leading cause of death of kids.

While I agree with some of this and we all do surely agree that NO ONE should have to pay for this kind of mistake with their life, sometimes drivers get put in a position of not having enough time or space to avoid a collision. We don't know the complete details of what happened but I do agee that people on bicycles - not to be confused with a cyclist - tend to make bad decisions like not wearing helmets or listening to music while riding and almost never think they have to stop. They expect drivers to avoid them no matter what and that is not always possible. RIP to the young boy.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Japanese news said that the boy was crossing a busy Y junction without any markings or traffic lights. It rained heavily on Sunday, that may also have been a factor. No mention about helmet.

現場は、県道に市道が合流するY字の交差点で、男の子は横断歩道のない市道を横断中でした

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Mocheake said - “sometimes drivers get put in a position of not having enough time or space to avoid a collision”

The onus of responsibility should mostly be on the more powerful/more dangerous - should it not? If we were serious about making streets safer all cars would be equipped with speed limiters in cities and there would be red light cameras at every intersection and actual prison sentences for drivers who kill.

This 5th grader was killed in a crosswalk while walking with her father a few days ago - by a driver who ran the red light.

https://news.yahoo.co.jp/byline/yanagiharamika/20210322-00228618/

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The weather here in Yokohama was awful yesterday morning - strong wind and heavy rain. I’m guessing it wasn’t much different in Kashiwa. The conditions for both riding a bike and driving were less than ideal.

RIP to the poor kid and condolences to his family.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This story lacks loads of information. Did he decide to cross on a whim?, Was she on her phone?, more info.

I know as a driver, especially around parts of Osaka, I always have to be on full alert as bicycles tend to shoot out of nowhere without looking.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It is quite disturbing to read how many people are, without hesitation, blaming a young child for having been killed by a driver. Is there a pro-motorist culture in Japan which extends to the point where the rights of the motorist are believed to transcend the lives of children?

Alastair (United Kingdom)

3 ( +6 / -3 )

In Tokyo, and probably all of Japan, kids can't ride their bicycles by themselves until the 3rd grade and they do learn about bicycle safety in school before they can. Not many kids wear helmets though. It took a lot to convince my son to wear a helmet, about 3 years worth, but to my relief he now wears one by himself without my urging. However, he rides a road bike and not a mamachari style bike. A bit more dangerous IMO.

RIP little one.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Its interesting reading the comments how some of the posters already conclude the driver was guilty. There is always to sides to a story. In this case I feel there is more left to be said why this UNFORTUNATE ACCIDENT happened. It's sad for both individuals the deceased boy family and the driver family. We should let the accident investigation decide the facts before we post.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Walk like you the only one on the street, run like you have no cares in the world, play like there is no tomorrow, sure i get it,and no one should have to pay the ultimate price, But they do. You cannot ride a bicycle without disregard for what is around you, with a care or a worry or without paying attention to the traffic or the road.

The parents, the school or society needs to shoulder the burden of this kids situation, we all get it, but it could have been avoided by educating and teaching them about how to navigate and interact with vehicles and road ways around them at a young age.

Sorry if you disagree ! I have had kids of my own in this country I know how the education system is, its about 1X1 , ABCD, compliance, yellow hat, white shoes, nothing about road sense.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Alastair-

Don’t waste your breath on drivers, for they will despise the good sense of your words. - Proverbs 23:9

“It’s hard to get a car owner to understand the reason (staring him right in the mirror) for kids being killed on the roads, when his ego and convenience depend on his not understanding.” - Upton Sinclair

1 ( +3 / -2 )

why are helmets still not compulsory in Japan

They are compulsory for children under 13. The law was passed on 2006. Not that anyone would notice.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

A piece of thin plastic strapped to the 10-year-old boy's head would not have prevented this accident.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

First, my condolences to the family of the departed little boy.

Second of all, cycling is dangerous in Japan because most roads are not really made for bicycles in the 21st century. The ones that are generally made for parks. On a typical urban road you watch out for parked cars, suddenly opened doors, kids and pets running in front of you and--yes--those less than wonderful people who refuse to stop for pedestrians and bicycles. The poor little boy is a casualty of rotten urban planning and bad driving.

I'll end with a call for helmets. Not the cheap plastic helmets but regulation cycling helmets. As doctors will tell you, they can rebuild any part of your body except your head.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There are no winners in this situation. I wish there were more details available.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

bicycle riders licence should be mandatory

James & Chris, I certainly haven’t done any quantitative research on the matter, but anecdotally, after reading headlines in Canadian papers, I strongly feel that there are far fewer bicycle accidents in Japan. Of course BC Has mandatory helmet laws, but that doesn’t seem to help much.

Personally I’ve been riding bicycles for 65 years, and I am very happy to be helmet free, and happy to not live in a nanny state. Freedom from overregulation is one of the main reasons I love Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Seems like a significant number of accidents involve bicycles and cars. The article doesn't say whether he was wearing a helmet or not. either way, tragic for all concerned.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I take the utmost care while driving anywhere. For me, it's always "expect the unexpected". I wish that more cyclists would do the same (at least the ones I've encountered). In any case, what happened was tragic for all those concerned.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I got hit by a car when I was 11 and spent 6 weeks in hospital, if the driver was going over the 30mph speed limit it would've killed me, I was very nearly paralyzed as it was. I don't remember the incident beyond being late meet a friend in the park but evidently I skateboarded straight across the road to the park without stopping or looking and the driver had no chance to stop in time.

Of course I don't know for sure but I can easily imagine from the little that's written that a similar thing happened. It's really sad for everyone involved but kids do get tunnel vision where they don't asses risks properly.

3RENSHOMar. 23  06:46 am JST

A piece of thin plastic strapped to the 10-year-old boy's head would not have prevented this accident.

Sure, had I been wearing a helmet it wouldn't have prevented the accident but it would've prevented me getting a big hole in the back of my head.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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