|From RGJ.com....read the whole article by clicking.|
Yeah, the title is a bit dire....but it's true. We're knocking off pedestrians left and right and there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to it. The question is how do we resolve the problem. The short answer is there isn't an "answer" to this. Everyone just needs to be more attentive (both drivers and pedestrians). It's harder than it seems for both parties to actually make this work.
A pedestrian trying to cross the street at a marked cross walk that isn't at a corner with lights (think mid-town area trying to cross Virginia St.) might stand on the sidewalk waiting to cross for several minutes. Technically, vehicles are supposed to stop when pedestrians are waiting. However, the reality is (as drivers) we don't stop unless the pedestrian makes a move. Often this is for legitimate reasons....a line of cars in front of us blocks our view of the waiting pedestrians, or the pedestrians don't look like they are sure they are crossing, or we didn't see them early enough to stop. However, there are also many times I (as a pedestrian) have made direct eye contact with a driver while waiting in inclement weather and they just are going to bother to stop....because it's inconvenient and takes 30 seconds out of their day. So both parties have to play the game.
The real answer is to be respectful to the other party (driver or pedestrian). If you're driving....slow down and do the speed limit, remember you're wielding a multi-ton vehicle, keep an eye out for more vulnerable road users. If you're walking....watch for traffic (it's your job too), cross quickly when you have to...don't amble along and make cars wait unnecessarily. Both parties....hang up the damn phone.
Anyway, if everyone pays a bit more attention, hopefully we can decrease the number of deaths in 2015.