STAY SAFE ON THE ROADS: That is the message from John Garner, pictured with dad Mick who died after being hit by a lorry in Margate last May
ROAD Safety Week should be taken seriously by everyone regardless of how they use our roads. From the pedestrian to the lorry driver, we all have a duty to take care and be aware when using the modern crowded highways.
When my father was killed after being hit by a lorry in May it left me feeling totally numb. For quite a while I simply refused to believe what had happened. I became uncontrollably emotional and got angry at the smallest things.
What happened not only ended my father's life but also ruined countless others. My mother's life has become simply unbearable without him, and it is heartbreaking for me to see it.
My father was a competent bicycle user and had cycled the same route to work for 33 years until that tragic morning in May.
He knew the route, he had his lights on, he was cycling as a cyclist should in the well-lit area of Margate seafront. Yet still he was not seen by the lorry driver, who has since taken full responsibility for the accident.
Even with the greatest precautions and safety awareness, danger is never far from rearing its head.
I urge all drivers, pedestrians and cyclists to take that extra bit of care.
If it can save even one family going through what mine are right now then Road Safety Week is a great thing.
It infuriates me to see people behind the wheel on mobile phones and I have lost count of the times I have nearly been involved in an accident due to their lack of awareness while they chat away on them.
Speeders are also a constant threat on our roads and it amazes me the speeds some people do down small residential streets. They seem totally unaware that the speed limit is there for a reason and they are not only risking their own lives but also those of other, innocent people.
The emergency services do a fantastic job and do not need their time taken up by totally avoidable accidents.
I always saw tragic news stories about people dying in road accidents and always felt such sympathy for them.
You simply never think it is going to be you and your family. But that can be the reality, here one day and gone the next. Your mother, your father, your wife or husband.
My dad left his house on the morning of May 14th and never came home.
Let's embrace Road Safety Week to make sure other people's loved ones do return home.