To the editor: Driving is dangerous, and it is a privilege, which is something that people and car manufacturers seem to have forgotten. According to your article, Nicole Linton was FaceTiming with her sister shortly before the Aug. 4 Windsor Hills crash that killed five people. ("A successful nurse's mental struggles remained hidden — until fiery L.A. crash left 5 dead," Sept. 19.)
Linton had no "right" to be driving at that time, yet her sad story of struggling with bipolar disorder made the front page of The Times. What's the point of this? To make the case for better mental health support or job screening?
What is being done to support the families of the people killed? Who is going to replace the damaged cars of those who survived the crash?
Deborah Regan, Palos Verdes Peninsula
To the editor: Thanks to Noah Goldberg for his reporting on Linton's mental illness and the events leading up to the horrific crash. Thanks also the the editors and the publisher who support this reporting.
The only way we are going to prevent devastating incidents like this in the future is to understand mental illness and provide care to those living with it.
Care for mental illness is breathtakingly inadequate — difficult to get if you're healthy, and much of what exists is unaffordable. The legal system is simply the wrong place to be handling mental illness. Sorrowfully, it's too late for the five dead and their families, as well as Linton and her family.
But treatment for people with mental illness is the answer. We must find a way to provide it readily and compassionately, or we are certain to have more heartbreak.
Frank Kosa, Santa Monica
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.