Only By Luck …

I camethisclose to dying yesterday.

Living in a condo near Playhouse Square, it’s impossible to avoid the Post Road.

No matter where you live in Westport, you find yourself on it too.

The Post Road is our central artery. It’s where we get our groceries, coffee and gas. Much more than Main Street, it really is our “main street.”

And though — or maybe despite — being clogged with traffic, it’s also our Indy 500 race track.

Every day, we see them: pony-tailed, baseball capped moms wielding enormous Lincoln Navigators. Tanned, sunglass-wearing guys in midlife-crisis Maseratis. Teenagers in their parents’ (or their own) Range Rovers.

All share one common thought: themselves.

It doesn’t matter that they also share the road with countless other cars, trucks, and occasional joggers. They don’t care that everyone else has someplace important to go too. They see the same yellow and red lights as the rest of us.

None of it matters.

At 8:05 yesterday morning I was part of the heavy traffic heading east. Terrain was on my left; the Volvo dealer, opposite it.

Suddenly a car roared out of Rayfield Road, on the right. It just missed the one next to me, and headed straight for my passenger door.

Instinctively, I swerved left — smack into the westbound lane.

Only by luck was the Fresh Market light red. Only by luck was it too early for anyone to turn right out of that shopping center. Only by luck was there no one there.

Had there been traffic on my left — as there almost always is — I would have hit them head on. I could have been killed.

Or killed someone else.

Only pure luck saved me from this.

By the time I got back in my lane, the car that floored it out of Rayfield was long gone. The driver was on the way to someplace important — CVS maybe, or Gold’s or Starbucks.

Was he — or she; I never saw their face — as stunned, terrified and adrenaline-rushed as I was? Or did they just see this as one more example of their invincibility — a sign that other drivers would always get out of their way?

I’m a careful driver. But I drove extra carefully the rest of the day.

Within 2 hours, 2 other drivers flew through red-for-awhile lights. One was at the notorious Post Road West/Wilton Road/Riverside Avenue intersection. The other was a mile away, where Riverside and Saugatuck Avenues diverge.

I have not exaggerated any details. It’s several hours later, and I’m still amazed I’m not at Norwalk Hospital or Harding Funeral Home.

Only by luck, I’m not. If I had been looking at the dashboard, looking at the traffic on the left, looking in my rearview mirror — doing anything other than using my right-side peripheral vision — I might never have survived.

But luck was on my side. I lived to write another story.

So I’m writing this one.

68 responses to “Only By Luck …

  1. Jalna Jaeger

    Oh Dan, I am glad that you are ok. You are correct there are so many terrible drivers out there. s
    stay safe.

  2. Susan Iseman

    Phew, Dan! Very often, our basic skills as drivers are all we have to survive a simple trip to the grocery store. I habitually drive the speed limit and witness the frustration of those speeders traveling behind me. Sometimes they illegally pass me, putting themselves and others in danger, only to meet me at the next traffic signal. Red light and stop sign runners are rampant, not just here in Westport, but many other areas. I wish we had more traffic enforcement from our local police. What can be done, people?

  3. Mickey Herbst

    Thankfully you survived to tell the story. An accident is a confluence of several different factors converging on the same place at the same time. This incident was missing one of those factors…you were paying attention to the road and the task at hand. My belief is that the emergence of narcissism in our society contributes to the aggressive driving epidemic. Problem is, it used to be represented by flashy clothes or a big bravado. Now it seems to employ a 5000 pound device or a very fast and noisy one that can be a danger to everyone else.

  4. Paul Lenihan

    So happy for you and sad for the rush! Please readers let’s make an effort to do our part… tranquillity please!

  5. Interesting, Dan.
    I, on the other hand, am amazed at the number of “good” drivers out there. When one thinks of the huge number of cars, SUV’s, Trucks, vans and busses on the road every day, and the number of incidents like you just experienced, or the number of accidents, or the number of drivers who don’t obey lights and stop signs, it is infinitesimal….no one reports on the dog that does not bite, Dan; but the number that do, in relation to the number of dogs out there, is few and far between….we just bitch like hell about the few that do.

  6. Wow Dan,
    I’m glad you’re all right. The Post Road is horrible. I have been rear-ended twice badly/ the second time by a 16 year old when i was stopped at a red light. I try to avoid it now- just too dangerous. Often easier said than done.
    I’m relieved you’re okay.

  7. Jack Backiel

    I’m glad you’re alright, Dan! May I suggest speed cameras. If there was one there, the police would have a picture of that license plate.

  8. Kuku Fleming

    Dan, I’m glad you’re okay.

    Next thought: What solution would the good people at Westport Police Dept propose?

    • Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

      Maybe, like, stop being so god damned selfish. Or is that too plebeian for town sensibilities.

  9. Janette Kinnally

    Welcome to 06880 daily. I think I almost get hit daily – most parents have to drop off or pick up their kids at some activity daily and I dread driving off my road to turn onto Easton road which is also a speeding thruway – it is crazy – I sometimes turn and pray during the turn (that is how dangerous it has gotten( and now my son is 16 and I almost don’t want him to drive yet, because people are so aggressive driving now). The police have said that there has been an uptick on aggressive driving, road rage and cars being broken into and stolen. There really needs to be a reevaluation on how there can be more consequences/laws changed for this.
    And don’t park next to the massive Lincoln Navigators like I did yesterday in my small Toyota Highlander (LOL) the person parked next to me takes up so much space that when he got in his car he hit my car twice with his door (I was sitting in the drivers seat) and instead of saying sorry, just got in and left. So much needs to be improved, yet little is done until someone dies (and then usually the family members turn into activists and make sure that laws are changed after losing a loved one). It is too bad that it takes something terrible happening to eventually make changes.
    Sorry that happened to you Dan, but I hope your message can turn into something more then another complaint, but that action is taken and change is made.

  10. Not your time, Dan! But it was time for you to start this conversation. I agree with all, especially the dangerous intersection at Riverside/Wilton/Post road. Needs to be re-designed. although that may not stop narcissistic drivers, one of whom nearly ran me down at the crosswalk at Starbucks/Post Road and yelled at me to hurry up to the other side so she could turn her Range Rover.. Perhaps the police can patrol the streets more frequently.

  11. Eric William Buchroeder SHS ‘70

    Dan, I honestly dread the thought of life without you because you are a town treasure. Westport, at least from the distance of Ohio, has gotten so completely self absorbed that the event you describe is almost commonplace.

  12. Dorothy Robertshaw

    Dan we are all so glad you are OK ❤️🙏🏼…. And yes it’s amazing these big metal machines have some real crazies behind the wheels. My daughter grand-baby and myself were run off the road last week in Fairfield. We were on Old Field Road and a woman at 11:30 in the morning Flashing her lights as though she was going to a fire tried to get around us . I told my daughter to pull over to the right asap , sure enough the women blasted over the double yellow line and passed us… only to be stopped at the next light with us behind her. My daughter was in shock …

  13. Claudia Shaum

    We need speed and traffic fines and enforcement. The only way to deter all this is the threat – and execution- of fines. I’ve long advocated a campaign entitled “Slow the F’*^ Down, Westport”. Anyone who wants to form a committee to do that, I’m in. And, with every high density condo project that gets approved it’s dozens and dozens more cars on our roads.

  14. I, too, am so glad you’re safe, Dan. I agree with Eric. You’re a town treasure! Like all the previous commenters, I, too, have experienced numerous harrowing near-misses on the Post Road from people running red lights, etc.

  15. Cristina Negrin

    Phew! But “almost” and “lucky” aren’t near good enough. And unfortunately your story won’t reach those who need to hear it. Stay safe out there everybody!

  16. I’m so sorry for your experience yesterday. God has a way of watching over us. Especially those who are needed. I hope your message reaches our privileged society. Please take care. You are much needed.

  17. Bobbie Herman

    If I’m not mistaken, there’s a stop sign at the corner of Rayfield. But I’m so glad you’re OK.

    I can’t count the number of times something similar has happened to me, and usually the other driver curses or gives me the finger or fist. If nothing else, what ever happened to good manners? Westport seems to have run out of them.

  18. India van Voorhees

    Oh my God Dan that’s horrifying! You must have been shaken to your core.
    I’m so very glad you were alert and are ok. Glad, too, for the people I don’t know who survived that driver.

    I almost died once myself when a texting driver didn’t veer right when the road did, but continued straight – directly towards me, and I had nowhere to go. I’m not sure which was louder, my scream or my horn. Thankfully she heard one of them JUST in time.
    Lately, it’s gotten worse. I’m not a slow driver, but I’m always shouting “Get off my (expletive) tail !” I also have seen impatient people turning left on a red light. Astonishing!

    What do we think it is? People moving here from big cities who haven’t grokked the slower pace of a town? SO MANY new apartments and condos on the Post Road? People in a constant state of edginess after all we’ve endured these last several years?

    I’ve been chastised before for saying this, but I honestly rarely see a police presence here unless there’s road work being done. Yes, I understand that they’re busy keeping the drug dealers and other felons out – and I am truly very grateful to them for that, I feel very safe here. But is there traffic patrol? Maybe we need to add an officer or two?
    They’d be kept busy, that’s for certain.

  19. Mara Gottlieb

    I will also reach out privately, but I’m so sorry this happened to you, Dan. It’s terrifying and traumatc to realize you could have died in a given moment, and were just lucky enough not to.

    That being said, can this be a launchpad for some action, as others have described? I LOVE the “Slow the F**k Down, Westport” idea, complete with roadside signs, stickers and buttons, and maybe it could be a fundraiser for more cameras on the Post Road? People need to know there will be a consequence to their reckless driving and that they will be caught doing it.

  20. I am so sorry for your experience Dan and for the fear you endured, and glad it turned out as it did. This is sadly all too common everywhere I drive and so unsettling since so much of what we do on the road is for the safety and consideration of others, including signaling, full stops at red lights and stop signs, etc. where the bad driving tends to be so self-serving and so dangerous to others. Stay safe!

  21. Peter Mihalick

    First I’m glad you’re okay Dan. Second there is one way to stop this craziness. Enforcement. In the 10 years I have lived in Westport I can count on my right hand the number of times people have pulled been pulled over for speeding or traffic in fractions. I also have a house in Belleair Beach Florida population 1600 The speed limit in our town is 30 and 35 if you go over that by 5 mph you will be pulled over and ticketed. You wouldn’t believe what a positive affect this has on drivers. Foti get on it.

  22. Sheri Gordon

    So scary Dan. I dare say it is one thing Florida gets right — the state puts a median in all their multilane roads so the only choice is to turn right. I personally think left turns on Post Road should only be made a traffic lights and encourage my teenage driver to do the same.

  23. Thank goodness you survived what could have been a tragedy! There are too many bad drivers driving way too fast. In fact I had one speed by me on the Post Road yesterday morning and run a red light during rush hour. Everyone needs to drive defensively to stay safe as you did yesterday.

  24. Having driven in many countries and in almost all 50 states, having learned to drive in NYC taught by my father who was a professional driver I have never witnessed the extent of careless, reckless, entitled use of vehicles as in Westport. Oh, to be sure I have seen people drive badly everywhere in the world but Westport stands out, why? A few years ago, after a particularly bizarre accident I bought & paid for all the police reports of incidents just in one specific spot on my street in the middle of the block in front of my home which is not near an intersection in the last 5 years. There we over sixty (60) incidents/accidents. Amazing! Thank goodness you were alert. I exclaim to my wife…regularly….I can’t believe there aren’t more accidents in Westport.
    Dan, Westport can’t afford to lose you, stay safe

  25. mary schmerker

    Like all the others Dan, I am so grateful that you are O.K. You are a treasure to Westport and the residents need your reporting. All of us who are ex residents need your reporting also. While I no longer live in Westport or even Connecticut, I have seen an increase in rude and reckless driving. It seems to have increased with the Pandemic. Speeding drivers weaving in and out of traffic, crossing double lines and running red lights are things I observe every day I am on the road. Charlie and I came very close to being hit by a driver who ran a red light last week, Like the commenter above we were in our ( smile) little Toyota Highlander and the other driver was in a monstrous jacked up pickup truck. I don’t know if Westport sees many of those but they are very popular here.

  26. Richard Johnson

    I’m sorry to hear this. It’s the unavoidable and totally foreseeable consequence of zero – absolutely zero – traffic enforcement by WPD (i.e, ticket writing, not traffic directing), and next to zero effort by Town officials to fix so many known problem intersections. As someone who goes through the “Triangle of Death” every single day, trust me when I say that I sympathize. There are solutions, including speed cameras, red light cameras, and even noise detectors – for those driving with illegal muffling, another big quality of life issue here – that don’t require any additional manpower. What’s the excuse? Money? The town has more of it now than ever in recent history, or should, given the combination of pandemic relief funds and a huge influx in transfer taxes, permit fees, and increased valuations from all the new residents and renovation activity in town.

    As much as I would love to say the answer is people being more responsible on their own, we all know that’s not going to magically happen. It’s time to hold the people who are charged with public safety accountable. We pay many members of the WPD more than $200k a year to handle these issues. Make them do their jobs. And hold the Tooker administration accountable – this is supposed to be their priority.

  27. Carolyn Doan

    I’m glad you are safe Dan. This is a big problem. Cameras & medians are a great idea.

  28. To many of us suffer the dangers of Post road in Westport.
    Any commercial street like it with the heavier than it was built and desgned for traffic will experience these dsngers on an hourly basis. As for distracted and tuned out drivers we probably make a high ranking on that list.

    One of my suggestions comes in the form of patrol and enforcement. I hope and would like others appreciate our fine Westport Police department to do some in obvious observation, speed control and some additional “reckless driving citations” to demonstrate to violaters that your vehicle can be a dangerous weapon!

    To our distracted and entitled drivers, turn off the cell phones, loose the earbuds when driving, turn down that sound system, tune out in car conversations with kids and passengers and focus and concentrate on your driving and surroundings.

    As a final recommemdation, extend great manners and consideration for other drivers as Westport has been known for.

    Well, I can dream can’t I!

  29. Firstly, I am glad you’re okay, Dan. Secondly…too bad this is hardly news. Happens to me almost daily – yesterday (to your point, Dan), it was a teenager driving a Range Rover who apparently thought his life was more important than mine. And as much as there are many Westport PD officers I am friends with and how much I love Foti, I agree that we need WAY MORE police presence and action. And parents – how about (1) modeling good driving behavior, and (2) stop giving your kids cars that are too damn powerful for them to be driving??

  30. Diane L Lowman

    I’m so sorry that happened to you and so glad you’re ok. It happens all too often – I see dire results like you describe every day 🙁

  31. Patricia Auber

    Thankfully you are OK. I feel I take my life in my hands every time I get in the car.

  32. Roseann Spengler

    Horrible experiece. Grateful that you escaped injury or worse.
    Do we need the presence of more police cars, and officers out in town as a deterent?

  33. Arthene Hammerman

    I’m so relieved you are okay. Please stay safe and healthy.

  34. Diane Yormark

    We need pedestrian buttons in more of our lights and more traffic safety measures. I am glad you’re ok. The only other thing I will say is that there are good drivers and bad drivers through all walks of life. Some of us good ones do don pony tails and baseball caps! The real issue is that we are all rushing to get somewhere. We ALL need to leave earlier and give ourselves more time to get places. Again, very glad you’re ok. I had a near terrifying miss years ago when turning left into Barnes and Noble so I understand how scary it is. Let’s all pay attention and add pedestrian buttons to lights.

    • Jack Backiel

      Cameras would halt that speeding! Note that ‘cameras’ is plural.

      • You’re not wrong as much as you not right.
        Shades of “1984” and Fahrenheit 451.
        It’s a slippery slope, but how do we make drivers accountable, respectful, mindful, and focused while they are driving. …..self driving cars.
        When the insurence companies see that the problem is that we are human, you won’t be able to drive your own car and the self driving technology will prevail. There aren’t any problems humans don’t create….because we are only human.

  35. Bob Weingarten

    Luck was on your side, but also good driving habits. If we all drove with both, then hopefully there will be less accidents. Too bad that bad driver wasn’t identified since he/she will do this again! Glad your OK.

  36. Dan, you like many of your commenters and myself included, witness this on a daily basis. We live in town and the strip of North Main Street between Hudson-Malone to TD Bank is like a raceway, with cars and SUVs far exceeding the 30 MPH speed limit. The same holds true for Gorham Avenue, which has a 25 MPH speed limit [and speed bumps], and just happens to be a cut through from North Main to Compo Road North. Notably, Gorham Ave is in a residential area with lots of small children. Something needs too be done, and soon.

  37. Yes – thank goodness you are ok! And THANK YOU for writing about this. My wish is that everyone continues to speak out about traffic and safety issues and also suggestions – via 06880 and similar outlets or directly to town leaders or at upcoming District Traffic, Pedestrian & Bike Safety meetings. Dates are listed on the town website. Dan you are in District 9. The D9 meeting is April 28 at Town Hall at 7:00 pm. See you there! Thanks again, Nancy Kail

    • Glad you’re okay and posting this.

      Towns in Maryland cured this driving insanity by deploying speed and red light cameras! All it takes is the ability to see there is a deadly problem and a way to fix it.

  38. Kim P. Sullivan

    OMG!! I know the feeling of “what if ?!” I’m so grateful to hear your luck and timing kept you safe. Bring out more patrols in Wspt like we have in my town. Some warnings and tickets do wonders. Sorry, these close calls rock your world as it did mine on I-95 in Providence.

  39. Thank goodness you’re ok Dan. I had a similar experience not long ago near the Stop & Shop intersection. I had to drive up on the embankment to avoid being hit by a pick-up truck that ran the red light. Several cars behind me slowed down to ask if I was ok but the truck kept moving.

  40. Lauri Weiser

    So glad to hear you are ok, Dan (albeit, I bet, still shaken) I agree with all other statements, but I also find parking lots to be terrifying. People drive Way too fast!

    • Absolutely true re parking lots. Compo (CVS, Gold’s) is notorious. Fresh Market is really bad too. There are many others, unfortunately.

  41. Column volumes have been dedicated to this topic. We have a great low Mill Rate and so perhaps we can afford an additional two dedicated cops on Post Road Duty between 136 and Bulkely Ave? They’d be busy all day long!

  42. Dan – very frightening! While the SUVs/pickups are more deadly when they hit a smaller car, the same reckless driving problem exists with every kind of vehicle.

    I believe the typical aggressive driver believes there’s little chance of punishment. You might ask your police chief how many citations are being issued now, vs. the past. It shouldn’t be less, or the same; it should be more, in keeping with the higher death toll.

    Here in NC, the ACLU sued the state for suspending licenses of people who didn’t pay their traffic fines or show up in court, and the state settled with them, reversing some of those suspensions.

    The ACLU’s theory is that suspensions discriminate against drivers who couldn’t afford to pay the fines. My theory is that those drivers couldn’t CARE!

    What is a better proxy for reckless behavior than not only getting a ticket, but blowing it off!

  43. Jack Backiel

    How about a serious series of speed bumps strategically placed at the worst speeding locations? We put men on the moon, but can’t stop speeding on the Post Road?

  44. Dan, there must be cats in your ancestry- nine lives and all. Glad you survived to drive another another day. Be careful .

  45. laurie crouse

    So thankful your angels were there protecting you Dan.

  46. Hedi Lieberman

    Baruch HaShem

  47. Alicia Merritt

    When my family and I moved from Pensacola FL to Westport in ’85, we were shocked by the amount of bullying by and thoughtlessness of some (many?) Westport drivers. A lot of time has passed, and it doesn’t appear to have gotten one bit better. Thank goodness you were not hit, as were my husband and older daughter on an icy Sturges Road, sending them to Norwalk Hospital. The 20-year-old who hit them was angry at his mother, hence….

  48. Der Dan. , SO happy you were not physically hurt,. But theres emotional fallout also. If you collected Westporter’s stories about all our horrendous driving experiences and published a book about them it might have thousands of stories JUST in 06880.Going on 3 years ago I was struck by a Range Rover who slammed across the Post Road into the the driver side of the door, locking me in until the fire department arrived and cut the door loose, I have not driven since that day.

  49. Sam Febbraio

    Dan: Good to hear you survived the gauntlet that has become the Westport driving experience. That said, your near-death experience may actually have been worth the opportunity it presented for you to write the words “tanned, sunglass-wearing guys in midlife-crisis Maseratis.” Just perfect! I expect you’ll be opening in Vegas soon. In the meantime, beware the Range Rover.

  50. I echo many when I say I’m glad you avoided a tragic ending by good instincts, experience and skill. What you experienced is not at all rare. Jumping to a different driving experience, have you noticed cars on highways now, like the Merritt, who zoom in and out of lanes? I have seen cars passing others by DRIVING ON THE BREAK-DOWN LANE! I call them “Video Game Drivers” by the way they maneuver their vehicle. Stay safe.

  51. I’ve been tailgated, cut off, swerved around, flipped-the-bird by all makes and models. On at least two occasions, the uber aggressive driver was in a…Toyota Prius!

  52. Dan, thank goodness you are safe. We live right near your near fatal accident. In other neighborhood news, STOP signs are merely suggestions (note: Hillspoint/Spicer/Prospect intersection). Drivers also make abrupt left turns at red lights (note: Greens Farms/Sherwood Connector). Good luck to our student drivers with these role models!

  53. Mary Schmerker

    I posted earlier but what I just witnesses on my way home from the grocery store was unbelievable! We were stopped at a flashing red light. To our left is an Elementary School with a circular drive in front. School was letting out.
    On our right is a road grade Railroad crossing. A car, presumably having just picked up children. Pulled out of the school lot drove on the wrong side of a double line with traffic coming toward it and then pulled in front of the first car at the blinking red light and crossed the RR tracks just as the train horn was sounding and the gates were going down. This is probably the worst driving I have ever seen. They were not headed to a hospital or anything that could possibly warrant that behavior. Be observant, turn off your phones and be safe out there everyone.

  54. Eleanor Solovay

    Absolutely Frightening. I am so happy you survived.

  55. John Terpening


    Absolutely beautiful writing. Every word chosen well, positioned precisely, graphically, powerful, soulful and profound. One needs to slow down, relax, breathe deeply, focus and ingest every word, every syllable, in a way that allows one to truly feel the effect of what you are describing, its effect and its results. As a sixty year Westport resident I want to share….. as a newly trained and inducted volunteer fireman (Coleytown Engine Company Number 6) I went to my first “accident”. I went to my first “fatality”. I went to witness the “effect” of speed, mass, bad judgement, human tissue and an immovable object. In this case a telephone pole. A Westport telephone pole on a Westport road on a typical Westport evening…. To back up into my youth, my best friend Billy (seven years old), ran back across the street to get his favorite rubber boots. With the sun in the “operators” eyes, she smashed into his small, soft, pink, energized, life-filled little body continued to drive into the setting sun for a great distance before thinking maybe she had a problem with her car and should pull over to “investigate”. Having bounced his small cloth filled bag of tattered and torn clothing from the pavement to the undercarriage of the car into a barely recognizable lump of oozing mangled meat. Dead!…… Children can’t comprehend death, adolescents/teenagers can’t comprehend death, and sadly most adults can’t comprehend the gruesome, gut wrenching, “I have got to puke my guts out” effects of witnessing a violent, untimely and unjustified death as a result of one’s carelessness, recklessness and brutal actions. Sound familiar?
    And I believe if you read carefully your description of the “incident” you will possibly agree with me that what saved your life was the cumulative effect of all those years you played soccer. Yup!…. Soccer!
    Let’s look for a minute at eye/hand coordination. Let’s look for a minute at reaction time. Let’s look for a minute at peripheral vision, let’s look for a moment at paying attention, focusing on the “task” at hand, Let’s look for a minute at the physics, at the elements that constitute an “accident”. Let’s look for a minute at “impact”. Let’s look for a minute at asking our police force to become a referee in a sport that rivals a gladiator event and ask ourselves do I want to trust someone, an authority to regulate and penalize my “personal” actions? After Sandy Hook we got tough on guns. After you get killed at the intersection of Rayfield Place and the Boston Post Road will we get tough on what? Will we regulate and eventually take the cars away? Will we put the “drivers/operators” in a penalty box for a well deserved “time out”? Will we build a continuous divider from New York to Boston, install right turn only lanes, use overhead scanners to ticket offenders? Will we build cars that attach to a computerized track inset in the road that is operated by a computer in order to overcome “human” error? What will we do to change one’s inability to imagine the outcome of one’s actions? And let’s not talk about “freedom” it seems to have somehow transformed from burning one’s bra, to overt bullying. Bullying is a violent act, reckless driving is a violent act. Freedom does not justify one’s bad attitude, bad behavior, or rationalization of one’s desire to “win at all cost”, “to hedge one’s bet”, “to play the edge”, or claim one’s right to compromise another person’s life. Bullying……….a New York way of life….we saw it coming. “Right is Might”……..and what is the solution? Simple. Build small “vehicles” out of a malleable plastic, regulate speed to slightly faster than a walk, maybe the speed of an energetic run, install protective gear that would prevent injury (similar to the innards of a football helmet), make all intersections four leaf clovers, install speed bumps when approaching a stop sign, reward good drivers with a dozen donuts from Dunkin Donuts when they haven’t crashed their bumper car, their bumper SUV, their bumper truck, in a year.
    Otherwise the only other thing I can think of is enroll all drivers in a simulated car crash program where when they happen to not see it coming they get spattered with a good “healthy” dose of warm gooey stage blood (Caro corn syrup and red dye number 7) and made to walk home in simulated atmosphere of all four seasons, just to get a hint of what it is like to attend a car wreck in the middle of winter! Thanks again for the marvelous writing and the recount. Good Luck!

  56. Carl Addison Swanson

    Glad you are okay but Welcome to the New Westport. One where it is fashionable to be in a hurry because that is what important people are. I am told the local police have no incentive to grant speedy tickets for the revenue all goes to the State? Not sure of that but until Westport’s finest start focusing on speeders (and less on folks dumping their trash in commercial dumpsters or catching DWP ((driving while poor))) at night, fatalities will continue.

  57. Dan, I’m going to write to the proper authorities and demand that the town of Westport take out a life insurance policy on you. That was way too close a call, and we can’t afford to lose you!

  58. Peter Mihalick

    The Merritt pkwy has been brought up several times as a death trap. Totally agree. In all my years the only time I have ever seen police on that road is after an accident. Speed cameras at the bridges. Mail them a hefty ticket! After two tickets suspend their license and registration. This should be done on Post Rd as well. Ever drive South Compo? 99% speed well over the speed limit. Never any enforcement.

  59. Dan,
    Thank the Good Lord you are okay and that you are safe.
    Living in Westport from ‘61 to ‘07 it became increasingly obvious
    that traffic and those that think they are entitled don’t mix. On the roads and in the parking lots of Westport those people that don’t care unfortunately
    create unnecessary angst and fear for those that do care and are law abiding
    citizens. I miss my home town, however I certainly don’t miss those people that feel that they are entitled to do what ever they want whenever they want because think they are above the law and don’t care about the safety and well being of others.
    Thank the Good Lord you are okay.


  60. Ngassam Ngnoumen

    I am glad you are okay.

  61. Sylvie Jordan

    I’m so sorry you experienced this very scary moment, but happy you are ok Dan! Thank you for sharing and reminding us how important it is to be mindful, especially when we are driving. Cars can be the most dangerous weapons.

  62. Dr Robin Jaffee Frank

    We’ve all been there, experiencing the stupidity and carelessness of drivers who seem to think they’re immortal. It happens everywhere, not only in Westport. As someone who lived in Stamford and Norwalk before Westport, and commuted long distances for my work in New Haven and then Hartford, I’ve seen it all. The most memorably inexcusable example took place when I lived in Norwalk. A woman on her way to an exercise class rear-ended my car at a stop sign, causing consider damage and making it difficult to extricate my then-infant (now adult) son, strapped into his car seat, from the back. The scariest part was the baby’s silence.

  63. Thank God you are okay Dan! We moved from Westport to Florida 3 1/2 years ago and you are a lifeline to me for our dear Westport community. I thought the driver’s here would be better than in CT but that is laughable! Parking lots stink too! We really need to have our eyes everywhere when we are behind the wheel! I’m so glad you did and you were so astute to your surroundings. Where are the police when we need to catch these cracker jack drivers?