A 10-year-old boy was hospitalised after being struck by a car in a side street in Qormi, leading to questions about public safety for children in Maltese roads and open spaces.
“Name me one place where a boy or girl can ride their bike without a car passing nearby,” Maltese endurance athlete Fabio Spiteri asked publicly after news of the boy’s accident broke.
“We’ve even messed up Ta’ Qali, the only place that was car-free. Konkos island, where car is king,” he lamented.
The accident, which happened yesterday at around 4.30pm in Triq il-Flora, Qormi, led to the boy being hospitalised and certified with grievous injuries. He was struck by a 27-year-old Qormi resident.
Other people quickly shared their concerns about the lack of safety for children to play in the street, with some calling for more appropriate spaces for kids while others called for drivers to be more careful on the roads.
One person appealed to parents to be extra vigilant if they plan on allowing their children to ride a bike in the streets.
“I am not looking to judge on the basis of this accident, however these past few weeks I have encountered two separate instances of children riding a bicycle without a helmet,” they said. “One case was a literal crossing in front of me. I did not see the bicycle cross due to the blind spot in the car. The boy literally had no perception of basic car physics that it cannot just stop instantly, thank God that I managed to stop as I was driving very slowly in a side road.”
“If you’re providing kids with bicycles be responsible, teach the road safety, teach them how to respect the road and provide them with the basic necessary safety equipment,” they continued.
Another commentator took the opportunity to bring up the recent issue of ambulances struggling to make it to their destinations when called for on emergency.
Do you think it’s safe for children to ride their bikes on Maltese roads?