Two young women, one from Floyd County and a second from Ohio, died in separate traffic accidents in the county last week. Taylor Leigh Bedsaul, 25. of Floyd, was diving alone on Virginia Rte. 8 when her 2001 GMC Sonoma crossed the center line and hit a northbound 2019 Honda CRV head-on on Tuesday.
Bedsaul died at the scene. State police said she was not wearing her seatbelt. The driver of the Honda, Thomas M. Jasikoff, 69, of Fort Myers, Florida, was hospitalized. He was wearing his seat belt.
On Monday, Michael A. Borer, 61, of Ottawa, Ohio, was driving a 2020 Ford Explorer west on U.S. 58 when he ran off the left side of the highway, hit an embankment, and turned over. Alicia Michelle Borer, 30, of Columbus, Ohio, died. The driver was wearing his seat belt. The woman was a passenger in the back seat and was not. She was thrown from the vehicle at the crash and died.
Two different accidents. Two deaths of two young women who had one thing in common: Neither was wearing a seat belt in a moving vehicle at speed.
State police reports said speed was a factor in both accidents.
When you examine traffic accidents with deaths or serious injuries, failure to wear seat belts is far too often a common factor. In our rural county this week, this was a fatal mistake for two young women.
In an average year, about half of all fatal traffic accidents in Virginia involve drivers and/or passengers who are not wearing their seat belts. The State Pollice says:
Studies have shown males from the ages of 18 to 34 are less likely to wear their safety belt while in a vehicle. Pickup truck drivers, particularly young males, have the lowest seat belt usage rates of all motorists in the United States than any other type of vehicle. Within this same age range in 2005, 67 percent of male drivers in passenger vehicles and 74 percent of male passengers died in crashes nationwide and were not wearing their seat belts. Another national study shows a lack of seat belt usage resulted in 68 percent of pickup truck drivers being killed in crashes and 71 percent of pickup truck passengers were killed.