When determining whether or not a certain street or intersection is safe, a good first step is to ask the people who frequent it. Pedestrians, in particular, are usually aware of potential traffic issues, such as habitual speeding, ignoring traffic signals, or need for a crosswalk in a certain area, and urban planners would be wise to consult with locals when making determinations about traffic in certain areas.
Though drivers are knowledgeable about traffic patterns, they are not the best source for determining safety. Pedestrians are generally more vulnerable than drivers, without the protection of hundreds of pounds of metal between them and a vehicle if an accident occurs. Because their lives are on the line, they tend to pay more attention to potential dangers.
Sometimes community officials do not need to seek out locals. Sometimes locals come to them. Most municipalities have some method by which citizens can petition to have dangerous intersections addressed. One such petition was filed in Cincinnati, Ohio. One of the many signatories was a local businessman, owner of a small grocery store in the area.
Sadly, that same business owner was struck and killed while crossing the street he and others had previously deemed dangerous. On November 7th, 2017, Federico Ventura was making his way to work when he was struck first by one car and then a second. The second vehicle dragged him, and he died before paramedics arrived.
Events like this happen all too often in this country. A particular street or intersection is recognized as dangerous, and people petition to have it fixed, but nothing is done until someone is killed. Hopefully, Mr. Ventura’s death will finally spur the necessary change.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a pedestrian accident, it is important the driver be held accountable. But it also important to evaluate the place the accident occurred, and determine whether or not there were changes that should have been made by local authorities to make an accident less likely to occur. Please, consult with an experienced attorney who can answer your questions and help you make your case.