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Norwalk man’s death is a reminder to drive with care

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A good friend to many in Norwalk, Mike Hefferan, was killed Thursday in Westchester County when someone ran a red light and plowed into his car. Mike was one of the kindest and most gentlemanly individuals, and his loss is a great loss for Norwalk.

Every day, when I drive in Norwalk (and surrounding towns), I witness the bold flaunting of the rules of the road that have made this region like the Wild West. People run red lights, ignore stop-sign etiquette, tailgate and pass illegally, drive way over the speed limit, and in general take out their anger on the road—every day—as if traffic laws are mere “suggestions.”

We are driving vehicles that are capable of causing injury and death when driven irresponsibly, and when our fellow citizens do not obey the rules of the road established for our safety, we have anarchy—and possible danger and death. As in the case of dear Mike Hefferan, a Norwalker.

I recommend a city-wide discussion and education program to REMIND Norwalkers of their duty on the road toward one another: Respect and patience, so lacking in our society today. That’s all it takes to be civilized, and safe. How can we help one another with daily anxiety and stress that make us rush around and take risks on the road? These are questions I believe we can find answers to, and a problem we can solve. We need to air it out and talk about it. Then implement some sort of remedy.

To our Mayor and Police Chief: Thank you for putting your attention on this matter, reminding citizens of their duty to respect the rules of the road, to eliminate the risks. This is a quality of life and safety matter of great importance so we do not lose any more outstanding citizens, like Norwalker Mike Hefferan, the world needs.

With respect for our great city of Norwalk,

Audrey Cozzarin

9 comments

Milly March 31, 2019 at 10:22 am

Where there are cross lights – right on red should not be allowed. Cars turn on those red lights without looking and if you are crossing it makes for a dangerous situation.

Michael Foley March 31, 2019 at 7:32 pm

Its very sad the Mike Hefferan lost his life in a tragic accident ! I pray for his family and friends . This is all of our responsibility to put the phone down and pay attention to the rules of the road.

Red headed movie star March 31, 2019 at 9:19 pm

I don’t know Mike but I extend heart felt condolences to his family. A tragic accident.

Liz Conti April 1, 2019 at 6:13 am

May God rest the soul of Mike Hefferan. The careless driving of others is a problem here in Norwalk and all over. Another indication of the fast pace of our day to day. I am teaching my youngest to drive this year, it is important for all to realize that driving a car as the author notes gives a driver a major responsibility as a vehicle can be a lethal weapon. Safety is every driver’s first responsibility. Perhaps a requirement to re-do your road test at each renewal?? That may be a little much but these days we are seeing too much of the above and some education or better accountability is warranted.

Angela Carey April 1, 2019 at 2:07 pm

Mike Hefferan’s untimely and unnecessary death is tragic and sad. Heartfelt sympathy and prayers to Mr. Hefferan’s family.
I agree that the city needs to do more public safety education in regards to the driving in Norwalk. Why not have motor vehicle safety public announcements on Ch 12 news and on local radio stations. More attention is needed about the tragic consequences of reckless driving and disregard for traffic laws.

Carey Dougherty April 1, 2019 at 2:52 pm

Mike was truly a wonderful person, and this news is heartbreaking. We need to remember our responsibility to each other when we are on the road, and slow down! Being somewhere 2 minutes earlier — the amount of time we would wait at a red light — is not worth risking someone’s life. Sending my heartfelt condolences and prayers to Mike’s family and friends.

John Clark April 1, 2019 at 6:40 pm

I think we humans are not creatures of God, as taught in Sunday School. The behavior of humans on the highways only proves the theory of survival of the fittest. The fittest maybe those who perfect murderous behavior on our highways. Driving on I95 in CT or I70 in Denver only proves Darwinian view of life on this planet. I believe that every person applying for a license to drive in our area should be required to take the Skip Barber driving course in Lime Rock. If they can’t afford it, no license.

Rusty Guardrail April 2, 2019 at 9:41 pm

A pedestrian in the crosswalk has the right-of-way over a vehicle making a turn.
A vehicle travelling on a main road has the right-of-way over a vehicle entering the main road from a side street or driveway.
Norwalk drivers routinely ignore these rules, and the Norwalk Police Department–apparently by department policy–routinely ignores all traffic violations.

Sandy Bria April 3, 2019 at 9:10 am

Mike’s death is a terrible, terrible tragedy and a tremendous loss to his family and the Norwalk Community. My sincerest sympathies.

Audrey and others make, what seems to me, very common sense suggestions on how to deal with road rage and in some cases plain disregard for the rules of the road. I would love to hear from our Norwalk policy makers and law enforcement management on this. We can not wait for another wonderful human being to die before action is taken.

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