Mother Asks Legislature to Pass Sarah's Law

POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- A mother from Mason County is trying to ease her pain and help save lives at the same time.

Brenda Nott lost her daughter in a car accident in March.

Twenty-one-year-old Sarah Nott died in Gallipolis Ferry on W.Va. Route 2 when she tried to exit a gas station.

Nott says three trucks were obstructing her daughter’s view of oncoming traffic, so she inched forward a little at a time in between the trucks, trying to see to turn.

“She inched enough, she was out there quite a bit,” Nott said. “But the car behind her kept moving also, so she was kind of pinned there.”

Sarah had nowhere to go other than forward. Before she knew it, she was too far into the road. She saw a truck coming toward her and she hit the gas to get out of the way.

The truck swerved and hit Sarah’s car, killing her.

Nott says the situation could have been avoided if the current law was written more clearly and enforced.

Nott says the current law states that you must not park “at any place, on any highway, where the safety and convenience of the traveling public is thereby endangered.”

She says the law says that people parking beside a highway must park at least 6 feet away from the white line, allowing people trying to enter the highway to see around vehicles.

But at the time of the accident, Nott was told that was up to interpretation.

That’s when she decided to start a petition to amend the law or create a new law, called Sarah’s Law.

Nott spent Monday in front of legislators giving a presentation about her daughters’ death, what the current law states and what she thinks should be done.

“They believe that when they make these laws that its enforced,” Nott said. “They were quite unhappy about this situation and they’re going to try to amend it.”

Nott said her idea is, if there is nothing blocking the space that is illegal to park in, that the business must paint a line, marking off the area as a no-park zone.

Nott currently has about 1,700 signatures. She says she plans to go to Cabell County next to continue raising awareness. Although the name Sarah's Law is already taken, Nott says she still wants the law amended to honor her daughter.

“If this will save just one life or make somebody a little more careful,” Nott said, “I think Sarah would be real happy about that.”

Sarah Nott was a student at Marshall University. Brenda Nott says her daughter was consistently on the dean's list and was about to be inducted into the National Honor Society. Marshall University accepted the honors for her two weeks after she died.

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