Sandy Cutrone was riding her bike on Montauk Highway last year when she was hit by a car and broke her shoulder. Cutrone went straight through a green light, and a driver going the opposite way turned left without yielding to incoming traffic. The impact was great enough to crack Cutrone’s helmet.
In December, her son, Matthew, wrote a letter to Thomas Barraga of the Suffolk County Legislature asking him to consider putting in a bike lane. Barraga response implied Cutrone should never have been riding in the fist place.
I have lived in West Islip most of my life and my personal feeling is that no one who lives in our hamlet or for that matter in Suffolk County should ever ride a bicycle or motorcycle. I cannot tell you how many constituents over the year have told me that they are taking up bicycling for pleasure and exercise. I have told them not to do so but they usually do not listen – 90 percent of those people eventually were hit by an automobile, many like your mother with serious physical injuries.
When pressed about the 90 percent number, Barraga said “It’s predicated on my constituents who have contacted me over maybe a 30, 35-year period.”
Any Suffolk Countyites who feel alienated by their legislator’s antipathy towards cyclists are encouraged to come to the city. Biking is great here.
(Photo: @Holly Ladd)