I am writing concerning the recent incident at San Onofre State Beach regarding a Border Patrol truck hitting a child ("Girl Hit by Border Patrol Truck Stable," July 16).
I go to San Onofre often, and if a ranger sees a surfer going over the 15-m.p.h. speed limit, we get a ticket. If any of us, God forbid, should ever hit anyone, we'd be trading in our wet suits for prison uniforms. The accident probably could have been avoided if the driver was going the speed limit. When the accident did happen, no citation was given.
Officer Jerry Bohrer of the California Highway Patrol said that "the responsibility for the accident lies with the pedestrian." As long as I've been driving, I was under the impression that the pedestrian has the right of way. According to Officer Bohrer, it sounds like open season now on pedestrians.
Why is the Border Patrol above the law? Why do they have the right to race their jeeps along the beach and their trucks along the road amid innocent people, on "routine patrols"? Why do they have the right to drive at night with their headlights off? Even when they are in pursuit of (someone), should they be allowed to drive through the park's narrow, curving roads at speeds of 60 and 70 m.p.h.? Is catching an illegal alien more important than the safety of innocent campers?
We've all known that sooner or later innocent people would be hurt. How many more children have to be injured before the Border Patrol slows down and obeys the rules of the road?
PETER WILLIAMS, San Clemente