GALLIPOLIS FERRY, W.Va. — A grieving Mason County mother went before members of the state legislature Monday pleading for a new law to prevent another tragedy. Brenda Nott lost her daughter Sarah back in March in an auto accident along Route 2 in Gallipolis Ferry.
Sarah was leaving the Par Mar convenience store on Route 2 but her mother said her view of the road was completely blocked by three trucks parked alongside the edge of the road.
“Sarah lost her life due to large Frontier Communication trucks and a semi-truck parked left-ways,” she tearfully told the committee.
The 21-year-old inched her car out enough to see around the trucks, that’s when she spotted the tractor trailer barreling down Route 2 towards her. She tried to zip across the road in order to avoid being hit, but the truck crashed into the driver’s side door of the vehicle. The Marshall University honor student was killed.
Nott told the the Joint Committee on Infrastructure her daughter never had a chance because the drivers of the trucks parked alongside the road left no way for Sarah to see around the vehicles. She said there is a state law in place that prohibits vehicles from parking that close to the roadway but no one seems to know about it or enforce it.
“There’s no signs, no warnings, no nothing to tell people not to do that!”
Sarah Nott was the only person cited in the accident.
“My dead daughter was cited for failure to yield. She couldn’t see but she got the ticket!”
Brenda and her husband Randy started a petition drive to change the law and create new signage to clearly mark out where you can’t park.
“We thought painting a line across the parking lots, marking that boarder and writing ‘No Parking’ to get their attention,” she explained.
The petition has 1,300 signatures. But Nott doesn’t believe it will be enough to prevent another tragedy like the one that claimed her daughter. She urged members of the committee to consider changing the current law.
“That’s what one state trooper suggested, a new law to make it so specific, plain and simple and easy to understand,” said Nott.
She requested the committee consider passing legislation called Sarah’s Law to address the problem. Committee Chair Margaret Stagger, D-Fayette County, suggested Nott work with senators Mitch Carmichael and Mike Hall, who both represent Mason County, to come up with a document that could be taken up by the legislature at a later date.