Long Island’s roads are notoriously dangerous, especially as walkers and bikers increasingly share the streets with more vehicles. Add a driver who might have been under the influence of alcohol or drugs to that mix and the results can be tragic.
That appears to be what happened in the death of 12-year-old Andrew McMorris from injuries suffered in a daylight crash in Manorville on Sunday, when a 2016 Mercedes allegedly driven by Thomas Murphy, 59, hit five members of Shoreham’s Boy Scout Troop 161. It’s especially sad that the group, as part of leadership training, was walking on the side of a road while hiking the Long Island Greenbelt Trail. According to police, Murphy refused to take a Breathalyzer test but said he had been drinking.
Suffolk County regularly leads the state in traffic accidents. Roads need to be safer for drivers, walkers and bikers. Alcohol-ignition interlocks on every new vehicle should be required. Drivers need to slow down and stay focused, while families, friends and bar owners must be willing to take the keys from those who have had too much. Andrew McMorris was a seventh-grader whose talents and promise will not be realized. Another terrible loss on the roads for our community.— The editorial board