Santa Monica Farmer's Market Tragedy

Joined Aug 11, 2000
What a horror!!!! 9 people dead, 15 in serious condition and 20+ hurt. An 86 year old man plowed through the market when it was about ready to close yesterday. I'd been having trouble playing dodge car during break down a few weeks ago , mid market with barrels and signs saying street closed...a car with a seemingly sane women in her mid 40s drove right through the we are 1/2 block long and pretty obvious with the tents running down the middle of the double yellow line. It's crazy....I feel for the market and victoms, I'm sure they were not even thinking that it was a possiblity to be harmed.
it will be interesting to see what phone calls and repurcussions come from this nightmare. Send up a prayer for the Santa Monicans, thanks.
Joined Jul 3, 2002
This is my market. I go every Wednesday when it opens at 9 a.m. and am friendly with a number of the farmers there. My blood ran cold when I turned on my radio at 2:30 and heard the news. Yes, visitors feel absolutely safe there; the market has been in that spot for over 20 years I think.
Yesterday I'd been talking with one farmer who was telling me how she gets up at 2:30 a.m. to get to the market. Most of the farmers drive very long distances and the police said that they wouldn't be finished (and probably wouldn't let the farmers on that main stretch go) until after midnight.
Sorry, my thoughts aren't quite together. It's one of my favorite places.
Joined Dec 30, 1999
That's awful! I read the article. Sounds like it was a pure fluke. Thanks for calling it to our attention. My thoughts will be with the families affected.

Joined Jul 31, 2000
After Columbine me and my family planted a Columbine spruce in our back yard.

This seems like an appropriate to "plant" something for both the families and farmers.

Sometimes life just sucks.
Joined Nov 29, 2001
This is going to raise (again) the subject of annual testing for senior citizens after a "certain" age. Especially interesting to me, as I live in FL.

Driving is a privilege not a right.
Joined Aug 29, 2000
I heard this morning that a 10th person died....

The man who did this has been in trouble before for rather spectacular "accidents" like driving over a wall. I think someone in the DMV dropped the ball here. This guy should have had his license revoked!
Joined Jan 24, 2003
Its only sensible that any driver over the age of say 60 should take an annual safety test to prevent this from happening.
Really awful & horrific & the guys response of "how many did I hit " beggars belief, Im suprised he wasnt attacked at the scene.

Deepest sympathy to the relatives


Staff member
Joined Jun 11, 2001
My sympathies go out to all who lost their loved ones in this tragedy. Not to downplay the situation, but I think our worries are a little misplaced. Instead of focusing on elderly drivers, we should instead be more concerned with our youth. Statistically, drivers between the ages of 16 and 24 are most likely to be involved in a fatal accident. Alcohol use and plain stupidity contribute more to traffic deaths than slow reflexes and old age.

Joined May 26, 2001
If only the DMV in any state were able to keep on top of every driver, be aware of the "problem drivers" of whatever age, and have the ability to track them down and legally deal with them. :(

Unfortunately, in these days of Federal funds to the states being cut, at the same time that more and more unfunded mandates are being imposed, we're lucky we can still renew our licenses or registrations in under one full working day.
Joined Aug 11, 2000
I had a large card at the market yesterday for patrons to sign....we must have had 300 signitures.We pasrked cars on the ends infort of the barrels but I've got meetings next week to deal with the reverberations.One good thing came ut of it, I spoke to several around the US. New Orleans and Autstin who will be working on action plans. Getting the market alittle more organized. Cars in one way out the other. Someone watching the barriers when the farmers are leaving so that stray drivers don't drive through.It is interesting who thinks of what. Several of us wondered who would run the farms of the injured. Whether there would be los s of income this year, several of the farmers at Clayton said it would be like getting back on a horse. I have to carry insurence for $2m that would not even come close to being enough for this tragedy. One of my compatriots said it's sad thatit took this to get front page news for a farmer's market. It was also interesting that a large part of my market goers talked of friends or relatives that they wished wouldn't drive for fear that they don't have reflexes or eyesight or basic skills it takes to manuver through the streets anymore.:eek:
Joined Aug 9, 2000
Shroom when I was younger my Grandmother used to stop in the middle of busy highways and ask my Aunt how to drive, thank God they took her car away.
Joined Jul 3, 2002
It has been a week and we returned to the market today. Very sad, strange and moving. There weren't the crowds that having been sweeping into the market of late. During the stone fruit season, the streets are jammed with shoppers, but today there was too much room, too much space. It kept reminding us of people who wouldn't be there. What was truly chilling was walking down Arizona and seeing how narrow the path is when all the trucks are parked and stands are set up. There would be no room to escape.
One farmer told me that the news media had been everywhere earlier and had taken the farmers' parking places, but then they left or moved. I arrived a few minutes before opening and saw several cameras, microphones, crews just standing around looking at each other and not the market.
But people moved more slowly today; took time to look into each other's eyes, smiled and nodded. Some farmers had candles burning, some wanted to talk about their experiences, some only wanted to talk about growing conditions and production. You just had to sense what was appropriate. There was more music today; a woman moved gently through the market playing some sort of stringed instrument. One farmer told me she was able to sleep now. Another said she spent a lot of the week pulling weeds instead of doing paperwork. The produce was beautiful. The people extraordinary. And we keep everyone in our thoughts.
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