At around noon on Halloween, a panhandler was hit and killed at a busy intersection as he walked through traffic, asking drivers for money. The driver who hit him said he had not seen the man, had only felt a bump, and had looked in his rear-view mirror to see what looked like a backpack on the road. Even before this incident, Oklahoma City Council was considering an ordinance to limit where panhandlers can ask for money. While pedestrian should practice proper care when crossing roads, as a motorist, you also need to take care to avoid hitting someone crossing the street.
- Be aware of areas where people often cross the roadways, rather legally or illegally. Be especially careful in areas where panhandlers may weave between vehicles asking for money.
- Slow down in school zones, near children’s bus stops, and in other areas where children may dart in front your vehicle with little or no warning.
- Stop for pedestrians using crosswalks. Be sure to stop far enough from the crosswalk to allow vehicles behind you to better see the pedestrians. When stopping at the crosswalk, make eye contact with those crossing or wanting to cross to let them know you see them.
- Never pass a vehicle stopped at a crosswalk, even if you do not see anyone crossing the street. There could be people crossing who you are just unable to see from your angle.
- Backup slowly and carefully, making sure you are watching for pedestrians the whole time. Be especially careful backing up in neighborhoods where children are often present.
- Always be on the lookout for pedestrians. Even if they are on the sidewalk, they may decide to cross the street.
Unfortunately, sometimes it is the other vehicles on the roadways, rather than the pedestrians who cause the accidents. An auto accident lawyer can help you if you were hit by a vehicle, rather you were another driver or a pedestrian. Contact us for a free consultation.