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Sarnoff Responds to Incident, Calls for Reducing Liquor Bar Hours

TransitMiami.com continues to reach out to local leaders for a response to Sunday’s fatal hit and run incident on the County’s Rickenbacker Causeway. City of Miami Regalado has yet to return our call but City of Miami Commission Chairman Marc Sarnoff has issued the following statement:

“First of all, we cannot lose sight of the fact that a man made the decision to allegedly stay out all night drinking and then get into his car to recklessly drive home. There are far too many unanswered question from the tragic aftermath of this incident, but we can all agree that Carlos Bertonatti should face the fullest and most severe punishment allowed if he is in fact found guilty in the death of Christopher Lecanne. It appears to be a total breakdown by county dispatchers who should have immediately called in rescue teams from the City of Miami and Key Biscayne. According to our Fire Chief Maurice Kemp, Miami dispatchers called County to make sure they were aware of crash on a county road. Our dispatchers were told the County was aware. Twice during that conversation, City dispatchers asked the County if they need our crews to respond and told no. This is on tape and absolutely unacceptable. I know our Mayor is working with the County to find out exactly what went wrong and then take all necessary steps immediately.

This tragedy highlights the dangers our cyclists and runners face each day on our roads from careless and drunk drivers. Next Thursday, Jan 28th at 5pm, the City Commission will decide whether or not to extend the hours alcohol in local bars from 3am to 5am. I’ve already received hundreds of emails from local cyclists warning of the danger, since so many rides on the Rickenbacker originate in Coconut Grove. This was even before the tragedy with Mr. Lecanne. I urge anyone with concerns to attend this important meeting to ensure their voice is heard by Commissioners. It is our duty to keep our roads safe.”

Readers: Please let us know if you have been successful in reaching out to your local leaders. We hope to see you this Sunday for the Key Biscayne Memorial Ride at 9am.

5 Comments

  1. Jalan Perez says:

    Alledgedly the driver who killed the biker was at Club Space minutes before getting into his car. Maybe all clubs should close at 3:00 am? Miami does not need more murders, especially more murders of innocent people.

  2. Jose Gonzalez says:

    Isn’t Club Space open all night and all day? If Club Space was involved in another murder it is time the City of Miami considered pulling its licenses.

    How many Club Space customers need to die to enrich Club Space’s owner?

  3. Frank Johnston says:

    Right, Like drunk driving doesnt happen at 10pm, or 1am or 2:55am?

    Anyone that thinks that drunk driving will suddenly cease to happen by changing a bars operating hours is ignorant.

  4. Jose Gonzalez says:

    Police and drunk driving experts will testify that closing bars and clubs earlier means fewer drunks driving drunk. Experts will testify and the facts show that when drunks are home fewer bikers and other innocent civilians get killed by drunk, drugged and overly tired drivers.

    Yes. It is true that reducing a clubs hours means greater public safety.

  5. Marcos says:

    If drinking doesn’t happen in a club then it will happen in someone’s house or any other establishment. There is one option to increase the public safety of runners and cyclists. Its an option that many cities in the US and many countries around the world have already adapted: On Weekends, from 6 AM to 10AM you close an entire car lane (with cones). On our case, you would just need to close one lane from the toll entrance of the Island to the firehouse department before entering the city of Key Biscayne (before La Carreta), where most cyclist make a U-turn and go back to the toll for another loop. Its simple. This has been brought up to the commissioner and it was up for analysis. Lets see if the safety of the cyclist, triathletes, runners, and regular people that enjoy some exercise will matter. This action will stimulate and motivate the people to have healthier lives and be safe at the same time.

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