Eleven-year-old Julian Angelucci was killed by a hit-and-run driver earlier this month, and at a candlelight vigil honoring his life, there were constant calls for an end to the illegal driving maneuver dubbed the “South Philly Slide.”
The South Philly Slide, as many know, is the act of slowing down at intersections, but not really, and “sliding” through the Stop sign without actually stopping. Given South Philadelphia’s small, tight streets, this maneuver is quite common among those driving around South Philadelphia. It’s also insanely dangerous.
As many of the 200-plus people in attendance at the vigil often noted, it’s likely the South Philly Slide led to Julian Angelucci’s death, as he was hit in the crosswalk with his bicycle on Friday, May 18. The driver who hit him allegedly kept driving, and didn’t turn herself in until reports of the deadly crash appeared on the news.
Those who came to the vigil often repeated the phrase “Justice for Julian.” It was written on signs, and repeated as a social media hashtag.
Julian was the second cyclist killed in Philadelphia in 2018.
Unfortunately, as we’ve seen in the past, calls to end a long-standing practice in Philadelphia don’t really change unless physical changes are made to force change—especially as it pertains to driving. More red light cameras, and even stop sign cameras, which we’ve seen in Washington, D.C., would help end the ridiculous practice.
The South Philly community where Julian lived is still waiting for charges to be brought against the driver in the crash.
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