Man in wheelchair hit by truck now advocating for safer roads

Back in April, wheelchair-bound Carl Bringer was struck by a truck on Vance Jackson Road. It left him with broken bones and he's been recovering at University Hospital ever since.

SAN ANTONIO - There are about 5,000 miles of sidewalks in San Antonio according to the city's transportation and capital improvements department, but 2,000 of those miles have gaps in them. Oftentimes, it leaves people in wheelchairs with no choice but to ride on the roads.

That was the case for Carl Bringer back in April when he was struck by a truck on Vance Jackson Road. It left him with broken bones and he's been recovering at University Hospital ever since.

Kathy Walden is his friend and advocate, who believes that more can be done to make San Antonio's roads safer for people like Carl.

"Carl is just one person out of thousands in San Antonio of people who need to be in their wheelchairs to go to work, to go to the grocery store," Walden said.

On Thursday, the city approved $1.7 million for pedestrian safety projects through the Vision Zero Initiative meant to ensure safer roadways for all. However, city leaders admit that there's more work to be done.

"We have a long way to go, but the goal is, by 2040, to eliminate fatalities and serious injuries on our roadways," District 5 Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales said.

Additionally, the 2017 bond allocates $80 million to sidewalk work, but the transportation department said that safer roads is a community effort.

"Really, it starts with the drivers," said Art Reinhardt, the assistant director with San Antonio's transportation and capital improvements department. "It's not just the folks that may cross in unmarked locations, it's all about us being more aware of everyone on our streets."

A GoFundMe page has been set up to buy Carl a new wheelchair so that he can get around safely once he's out of the hospital.

© 2017 KENS-TV


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