女儿没有白死
FIRST PERSON: CYNTHIA BARLOW
采访者: 科尔•莫顿(Cole Moreton) 讲述者:辛西娅•巴洛(Cynthia Barlow)

When my daughter died after being struck on her bike by a cement lorry, I found the inquest a complete nonsense. I went into a deep depression and could have given up entirely. Instead, I got angry and thought, “No, I am still her mother and the system is not going to treat Alex this way.” So I bought shares in the company that owned the lorry that killed her. It was the only way I could think of to get them to face me in person and listen to what I had to say.

我女儿在骑车途中与一辆运送水泥的卡车相撞身亡,之后的庭审让我觉得毫无意义。我变得极度消沉,差一点就完全放弃了。但我没有,相反,我感到愤怒,心里想:“不,我依然是她的母亲,我不能让制度如此对待亚历克斯(Alex)”。因此,我购买了撞死她的那辆货车所属公司的股票。这是我能想到的唯一办法,让他们当面来见我,并听听我必须要说的一些话。

Alex was 26 years old when she died, 10 years ago last month. She had a masters degree and a new job with a legal firm in the City, where she had met her boyfriend. She was cycling to work when it happened. Her life was just beginning when it was taken from her.

亚历克斯去世时26岁,到上个月刚好10年。她拥有硕士学位,在伦敦金融城(the City)的一间律师事务所获得了一份新工作。也是在那里,她结识了她的男朋友。事故发生时,她正骑车去上班。她的生命才刚刚开始,就被无情地夺走了。

I bought £500 worth of shares in Readymix, or RMC as it then was: enough to give me the right to ask questions from the floor at their AGM. The meeting was at a very grand hotel near Park Lane. I was very nervous, but a friend thrust my hand into the air at the right time, and I read out what I had prepared. I wanted to know what had happened, why it happened and how they could stop it happening again. Everyone went quiet. Then the chairman asked the board member responsible for health and safety to contact me. To my surprise, he did; he came to London and we began working together.

我购买了Readymix公司(当时名为RMC集团)价值500英镑的股票——这足以让我拥有在年度股东大会上提问的权利。大会召开地点是公园路(Park Lane)附近一家富丽堂皇的酒店。当时我非常紧张,不过一个朋友在恰当的时机把我的手猛推到了半空中,于是我读出了之前准备好的文字。我想知道事故是如何发生的,为何会发生,以及他们如何能避免悲剧重演。所有人都安静了下来。随后,主席先生要求负责安全与健康的董事与我联系。没想到他真的这么做了:他来到伦敦,然后我们开始一起工作。

If you go through the statistics, it is the construction industry that is killing cyclists – concrete mixers, tipper lorries, skip lorries. There are several factors in this: vehicle design, driver training, and behaviour and attitudes. But I have done a lot with Cemex, as the company is now known. First, we made a training video for drivers, to get them thinking about vulnerable road users. Then I took up every point that was made in the police report on my daughter’s death.

如果仔细察看数据,你就会发现建筑行业是骑车人杀手——水泥搅拌车、自卸货车、还有翻斗车。事故诱因有很多,比如车辆设计、司机的培训、行为和态度。即便如此,我还是和西麦斯公司(Cemex,英国RMC现已被其收购)做了许多工作。首先,我们制作了一段司机培训视频,提醒他们顾及弱小的马路使用群体。然后,我开始研究警方在女儿死亡报告上列出的每一个要点。

Alex was an experienced cyclist on a familiar route along London Wall, and she was wearing a high-visibility sash. She was alongside the lorry for a considerable distance and the police evidence found that she was visible in at least one of the driver’s mirrors the whole time. He pulled out to the right at a junction in order to turn sharp left, cutting across her path. He didn’t know he’d run her down. The noise of passers-by alerted him and he stopped.

亚历克斯是一名老练的自行车骑手,所走的路线也是她熟悉的伦敦墙(London Wall)大街,并且还戴着一条非常显眼的肩带。她与身旁的货车隔着相当一段距离,而且警方证据显示,在整个过程中,司机用的镜子里至少有一面可以看到她。为了在一个交叉路口向左急转弯,那个司机驶出车道向右侧靠。这一靠正好斩断了她的去路。他还不知道自己已经将她撞倒,路人的惊呼声提醒了他,车才停下来。

I was never allowed to see her at the mortuary. I wasn’t even offered the chance of holding her hand. I know now that they were protecting me from the sight of her, but I wish they had told me that, or given me a choice.

他们不允许我去停尸房看她。我甚至连握住她手的机会都没有。如今我才明白他们是在保护我,不想让我看到她的惨样。但是我希望他们能事先告诉我这点,或者让我自己选择。

We have made a lot of changes to the lorries. The driver only indicated to turn left when my daughter was already alongside, so she wouldn’t have been able to see the indicator. The company has since put an extra indicator at the front of every vehicle, one that someone riding alongside can see. There are also extra mirrors and four new proximity sensors along the side of the lorry. These activate an alarm in the cab that tells the driver there is someone alongside, and where they are. It also sets off a voice box which says, “Caution, truck turning left.”

我们在货车身上做了许多改进。直到我女儿和货车并排行驶时,司机才打开左转指示灯,所以她根本看不到指示。从此以后,公司在所有车辆的前面都增加了一个指示灯,让在一旁并排行驶的人也能看到。公司还增加了几面镜子,在卡车侧面安装了四个新的接近感应器。这些感应器会激活车内的警报,告诉司机车边有人以及他们的方位。同时,它还会启动一段语音提示:“注意,卡车左转”。

Thanks to the adaptations we have made, Cemex lorries have stopped killing people. I hope that what I have done has saved a lot of lives. There are, however, still cases involving other construction companies.

多亏我们所做的这些改进,西麦斯的卡车不再是马路杀手。我希望我所做的事拯救了许多生命。然而,牵涉到其它建筑公司的事故依然在发生。

When my daughter was killed, I was working at the University of London. The last thing I wanted to do was go back to work, but I knew that having to face the world in the morning was probably the right thing. I’m very grateful to my employers: they supported me through all of this.

女儿出事那年,我正在伦敦大学(University of London)工作。当时最不想做的事就是回去工作,但我知道每天早晨硬着头皮去面对世界或许正是我该做的事。我非常感谢我的雇主:他们支持我一路走了下来。

When I retired, in 2007, I intended to spend my time painting. It hasn’t worked out that way. Instead, I became the chair of a charity called RoadPeace, whose mission is to empower and support the families of those who are killed and injured on the roads. Would Alex be proud of me? I hope she would. She was my friend – a good, talented, lovely person who would never have wanted me to give up.

2007年退休时,我本想靠作画来打发时间。结果却事与愿违:我当上了一个慈善组织的主席。组织名为和平之路(RoadPeace),其宗旨是为有亲人因交通意外事故而受伤和丧生的家庭提供实际和情感上的支持。亚历克斯会为我感到自豪吗?我希望她会。她就像我的朋友一样——是个优秀、才华横溢、可爱的人儿,她永远不会希望我放弃的。

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