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Susan B. Allan: Speeding cars to blame for sadness on Hadley road

To the editor:

I write in response to a letter regarding the responsibilities of owners for the safety of their pets.

If the gentleman had read my earlier letter, he would have noted that I was trying to bring attention to speeding cars on Rocky Hill Road in Hadley. I am well aware of the fact that I am responsible for the well-being of my animals. I have many vet bills to attest to the fact that I am a responsible pet owner. I also know and understand not everyone can stop for an animal. My point was the speed of the cars on this road.

The speed limits are 30 mph and 35 mph. Cars on this road travel well above the limits. I’ve been yelled at and flipped off as I cross the street to retrieve my daily paper and mail. This road is a shortcut from UMass to Interstate 91.

Someday, someone will be run over by a car speeding to get to I-91.

If anyone does not believe me that cars speed on this road, especially in the evening commute, please come and sit in my driveway and just see how fast drivers are going.

If I ever have the misfortune to run over an animal, I will at least move the animal out of the traffic and try to find the owner to let them know what happened to their pet.

Susan B. Allan

Hadley

Related

Paul Cherulnik: Owners responsible for safety of their pets

Monday, November 25, 2013

To the editor: One could not help feeling sympathy for the family of a letter to the editor in the weekend Gazette about a cat that was run over. We have two dogs and we would be devastated if one of them were run over in the street in front of our house. It might seem presumptuous, but to help … 0

Both people have a point. Yes, drivers need to slow down on this road. Cops do patrol it on occasion and try to help. But let's face it, the likelihood that everyone traveling on Rocky Hill road will regularly drive the speed limit is slim to none. Cats allowed to roam freely outdoors often come to bad ends whether one lives on a road full of speeders or not. In addition, they devastate local bird and rodent populations. Responsible cat owners do not let their pets roam outside wherever they like and frankly, having already lost one cat to the busy road, the owner should have known perfectly well that continuing to let a pet roam near the road is courting disaster. There is a much simpler solution to prevent cat deaths at the writer's home than the futile plea that everyone slow down on Rocky Hill Rd. That solution is to have indoor cats who will never roam into the road, where they could easily be killed even by cars going well under the speed limit. Or she could move to the country away from busy roads, and then the cat could also be at risk from coyotes or fisher cats. I only hope that other cats at this writer's home are kept indoors from now on or this will likely happen again. I sympathize since it took me years and three dead cats to learn this lesson myself. But it's really the only way.

I would like to support Ms. Allan's plea for drivers to slow down on Rocky Hill Rd. I drive this road twice a day to and from work, and know how easy it is to rev up to keep pace with speed-limit-defying traffic. Since reading her initial letter, I have slowed down to under 40 mph, which results in a long line of cars tailgating behind me like the spikes of a stegosaurus. I imagine the build up of colossal impatience behind me. That's a lot of peer pressure, but it would be a far worse to bear the agony of striking a child, a beloved pet, or an innocent critter--all for the sake of getting someplace 5 minutes sooner. So really, can't we all just slow down a little?

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