A few weeks ago, generic a hit-and-run case in a southern Chinese city that saw two vehicles knock down a two-year-old girl, seek who was then left to die in the street while at least 18 passersby ignored her fate, and has shocked the world sparking a worldwide debate of morality on our roads. Quite recently a number of UCD students have died on our roads, raising questions about safety and procedures in dealing with speeding and drink driving. Now that UCD have fallen victim to a hit and run case, what has happened to our sense of ethics and integrity?

On the night of the 31st of October, nineteen year old veterinary nursing student Katie O’Carroll was involved in a hit and run incident with a taxi outside of Merville Residences. The fact that the driver didn’t notice a woman dressed as Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz makes me think he may be mentally bewildered, but to continue driving with Dorothy on the bonnet, only confirms it. There is an alarming amount of deaths on our roads as it is without immoral maniacs who cannot process the damage they have or may cause. Sometimes, the hit and run driver is impaired with alcohol or other substances, and flees the scene because he or she is not thinking clearly. Alcohol might also cause someone to flee the scene of an accident for fear of being caught while driving drunk. Other times, people who are already in trouble with the law might flee the scene of the crime in the hopes that it won’t make their records worse. The issue might be as minor as having an outdated driver’s license, or it may be as serious as having an outstanding warrant for their arrest, but many drivers would rather risk the consequences of a hit-and-run than take responsibility for their past and current actions.

Although a few security cars can be seen floating around campus, I have overheard people talking about how you can’t be prosecuted for speeding on campus as it’s private property, much like speeding in a field. True or untrue, it’s alarming to think of people searching for ways to avoid speed cameras. You only have to go as far as boards.ie for tips and suggestions. So what could you do if the Taxi Driver was caught? Tell him off for not wearing a seat belt on impact? I personally agree with the introduction of the many speed bumps placed around campus and the closing of certain roads to stop non-UCD students and staff taking advantage of shortcuts through campus. A decision made to the annoyance of many students when first introduced. Let’s hope students can feel safe on our walkways and pavements before we suffer an even greater loss.