The Tator

One dead, four injured in campus walking accident


This is a satirical article and is not meant to be taken seriously. It does not reflect the opinions of The Spectator or UW-Eau Claire.

One student died after a tragic accident early yesterday morning resulted in an additional four students being critically injured.

Police said the accident occured when Wal King, a junior nursing student, became distracted by a sustainability event going on in the middle of campus. King swerved into an oncoming group of students and was trampled to death.

Four other students were injured during the process. One was knocked to the ground when she stopped to avoid bumping into King, while the others sustained injuries when trying to assist King as he was being trampled.

Police stated that the injured students are in critical condition, but hopefully will recover in time for finals week.

King’s tragic death brings to light the dangers of walking while distracted, a practice police said causes around 20 deaths per year on college campuses.

“Students get distracted by all kinds of things when walking to class,” said Paul Ease, a campus police officer at UW-Eau Claire. “Flowers, squirrels, campus activities and especially dogs are some of the most common distractions that lead to accidents.”

Ease added that cell phones are also a huge distraction that can keep students from watching where they are going.

“Most of the students that get injured were looking down at their phone and not at the walking path,” Ease said.

Karen Smith, a first year undeclared student, was a bystander during yesterday’s accident.

“It was like watching a car crash,” Smith said. “Wal looked up to see what all the loud noise was about, and the next thing I know, he’s lying on the ground, being stepped on by a huge group of students. It was horrific.”

Smith said she often gets distracted by animals and campus events while walking, but her quick reactions from years of sports have kept her from getting injured.

“After seeing what happened to Wal King, I realized I’m lucky to be alive,” Smith said. “It makes you think about how fragile life really is, and how dangerous walking to class can be if you aren’t paying attention.”

Many students are calling for all campus distractions to be removed in order to keep students safe on the walk to class.

“I’ve seen so many students get hit by bikes while walking looking at the beautiful views on the bridge,” said John Smith (no relation to Karen Smith), a senior theater student and student senator.  “The only solution is to put a roof or cover over the bridge so students can’t get distracted by the views.”

While John Smith’s solution may seem extreme to some, many agree that measures need to be taken to keep students safe when walking.

“I don’t want to have to tell another parent that their child was killed while walking,” Ease said. “We need to be sure that this campus is a safe place where students can walk to class without fear of dying on the way.”