Runners Hit by Car Evening run takes bad turn


News Editor

Two sophomore women were struck by a vehicle while running along Hwy. 441 on Sunday, Jan. 13.

Carmen Savelli, Jessica Tolliver, Rachel Tolliver and Molly Mullholland were running a two-mile route around campus, according to Savelli. Jessica Tolliver, Rachel Toll- iver and Mullholland are all members of Piedmont’s cross country team.

“About ten minutes into the run we had to get on the road that runs by the cem- etery so that we could take a right onto the road that goes by Mayflower,” said Savelli.

“We’ve run this route several times, and didn’t think anything of it because we aren’t on the road for very long.”
The four women were run- ning in a line on the road facing traffic when a car struck Jessica Tolliver, hitting her in the side with the rear-view mirror.

“I watched as [the driver] began to run off the road into the grass, and I saw her hit Jessica, but by that time it was already too late,” Savelli said.

“I was struck by the front of the car, and my thigh/calf took off the bumper. The rear view mirror broke off and some of the glass went into my chest. I also suffered from a dislocated pinky finger, and someformofligamentinjury to my wrist.”

According to Savelli, the woman driving the car seemed to be distracted by the four children she was transporting.
“The woman pulled over, and immediately apologized claiming she didn’t see us due to her children in the car,” Savelli said.
Tolliver and Savelli were taken to the Habersham Medical Center by ambulance and treated for minor inju- ries. Savelli has an MRI next Monday for her injured wrist.
Savelli is wary of running that route again.
“Personally, I have no vendetta against running on that stretch of road; however, I havenotrunthatparticular route again since the accident, nor do I plan to in the near future,” she said.
Savelli urges runners on campus to pay attention to their surroundings on the roads.
“No matter where you go, there will always be a distracted driver,” said Savelli. “It’s important that you are very aware of your surroundings, and understand that just because people are operating a vehicle, it doesn’t always mean they are in control of it at all times, or paying atten- tion for that matter.
“Be vigilant, don’t just assume you’re safe.
In 2010, an estimated 70,000 pedestrians were injured by vehicles. Of these, 168 were fatalities in Georgia. Pedestrians include joggers and runners.
The Road Runners Club of America, an organization devoted to distance running, suggests several tips for runners to avoid getting injured or killed by a vehicle, includ- ing limiting headphone use and running against traffic.