Achilles Wheel

Johnny Lu

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a skateboarder? Freedom isn’t the only one soaring around the Georgia Southern campus as skateboarders, long-boarders, bicyclists, and even roller skaters prepare for liftoff every morning to get to their destinations on campus.

As fun and wild as tearing down the pavement may sound, the sport isn’t for everyone, which brings up the question of safety in such a diverse environment. It brings up questions on how campus pedestrians can stay safe in an environment with a growing population.

“Although skateboarding and long-boarding have been around for the longest time, it’s still a growing sport in isolated areas. I believe people are still getting used to the growing popularity of skating and the factors and risks that come with it, just like any other sport such as bicycling or walking,” Thomas Jones, alumni and former president of the GSU Long-boarding Club, said.

One of the most dangerous things that could happen with skaters and bicyclists is a collision. Whether it’s on campus or in a major city, pedestrians will always be vulnerable to colliding with a commuter on wheels.

“One of the dangers of skating on campus is that people who don’t skate also don’t know what to do when a skater is headed in their direction and usually panic while trying to move out of the way, causing the skater to bail and jump off the board,” Adrienne Brynenski, sophomore criminal justice major, said.

There are pros and cons to this method of commuting on campus as the speeds can indeed get one where he or she needs to be in a quicker fashion, but can also come with the flaw of running into others.

“As a skater, I believe that there are responsibilities for both commuters on wheels and pedestrians. Both should be aware of their surroundings in a high traffic area,” Mindy Score, senior psychology major, said.