Monday, February 13, 2006

"Sharing" the Road

The Washington Times reports on pedestrian deaths in the District:
The string of pedestrian deaths in the District in the past two weeks has left community activists and city officials at odds over how to teach motorists and pedestrians to share the roads.
This may be the source of the problem - cars and pedestrians don't share the roads. Motorists drive on the the roads, pedestrians cross them. The job of the pedestrian is to get across the street quickly and legally. Many problems seem to occur when pedestrians don't understand this:
On Jan. 28, Jay Shawn Johnson, 7, and his mother, Shanika Howard, 25, were struck by a vehicle about 9 p.m. while crossing in the 800 block of Southern Avenue in Southeast. Both later died. Police said the two were not in a crosswalk.
Others are just injured by bad drivers:
In 1993, [Cheryle] Adams was struck at 13th and L streets in Northwest, where two vehicles crashed attempting to beat a red light. One driver lost control and hit Miss Adams while she was in the crosswalk, pinning her to a lamppost and severely injuring her legs.
Activists blame the police for not "educating":
Terry Lynch, executive director of the Downtown Cluster of Congregations, said Metropolitan Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey hasn't been fervent enough in teaching people about the dangers of crossing the street and educating motorists about being more aware of pedestrians.
We don't need some vague "educational" campaign from law enforcement - we need more law enforcement.

Click here for an earlier post on the open opposition to law and safety.

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