By Joel Johnson at 9:58 am Mon, Dec 22, 2008
Derek Chatwood writes, "This guy was zooming down Pike St. and then heading down 1st Ave, narrowly avoiding a head-on collision. Muttering loudly to himself the whole way."
I love you, cranky old daredevil!
I’ve seen dudes in chairs doing similar things, although not in this sort of snow; there are some disabled who can hold their own with NYC cabdrivers in terms of claiming and holding their roadspace.
I’m thinking this is the type of behavior that causes one to end up in a wheelchair in the first place.
This is especially dangerous given that it snows in Seattle once every few years at most, and no one is very good at driving in it.
Looks to me that the daredevil didn’t have a cleared sidewalk to use. That style of chair doesn’t climb curbs well, and with snow in the way.. He probably had to go daredevil to go where he needed to be. Which is why he was muttering….
I can so see my roommate doing this (if he’d been paralyzed when there was snow), possibly with me riding on the back for more visibility…
The sidewalks look like they barely have a dusting on them. Couldn’t possibly be harder for the chair to drive on than those sloshy-looking roads.
@Techdeviant, does it really snow that rarely in Seattle? I’m not doubting you, I just find it incredibly odd.
We had snow in Seattle around _April_ this year. It snowing now is less of a surprise, but this kind of volume is pretty special. There’s like 8″ or more in many places.
@TJ S, traditionally, yes, we don’t get snow that often.
@Techdeviant, the frequency of snow’s no excuse; it rains all the time and Seattlites aren’t very good at driving in that either.
@TJS Seattle gets an average snowfall of something like 3″ per year; we got over 10″ this last week.
Thanks for the answers guys. Very odd to me, as I live in Denver, and would assume with the famous ammount of rain Seattle gets, and how much further north you are, that would translate into lots of snow. Elevation does make a difference though.
FWIW – I’ve never been further west than Las Vegas. Also I’ve sadly only seen an ocean from an airplane. 🙁
TJ S: Seattle’s winters are pretty warm for its latitude, due to the stabilizing effect of the puget sound and a warm ocean current that hits the coast around here.
I’ve seen this guy numerous times in similar situations downtown… I believe he just has a death wish as he pays absolutely no attention to anything. He’d just as well knock you over with his chair then take any warning for safety of him or others.
In fact, standing at my bus stop, he’s frequently made an effort to run peoples toes over with his scooter. 🙁
…I am reminded of Alf Garnett and the DYI powered wheelchair he tried to make for Else on this one episode of In Sickness and In Health. The results weren’t that much different 😛
It’s weird in Seattle right now. There’s a feeling of barely restrained mayhem in the air. One of my friends likened it to the feeling of an off-world colony. Everyone’s staying indoors, the mass transit is completely shut down, and the only people out are crazy muttering old men in motorized wheelchairs.
Is this the coot from “Ghost World”?
I saw the same thing (woman riding electric wheelchair in the street) in Chicago the other day. The ramp cutouts in sidewalks get blocked by the street plows and/or flooded drains are filled with ice and snow so people in wheelchairs have no option but to use the street. Absent a functioning ramp cutout, a sidewalk is a deadend if it’s plowed in.
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