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Town Square

Police crack down on drivers ignoring pedestrians in crosswalks

Original post made on Mar 28, 2013

Mountain View police officers issued 37 tickets yesterday, March 28, as part of crackdown on drivers who do not yield to pedestrians in crosswalks, according to the department's spokesman. The crackdown comes after a woman was hit and killed by a car on March 4 and a crossing guard was hit and injured on March 25.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, March 28, 2013, 4:45 PM

Comments

Posted by thank you, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 28, 2013 at 5:13 pm

Walking around town has been getting so scary lately. Thank you MVPD for cracking down. I hope this is a year-round effort, not just one day.


Posted by Watching the Fun, a resident of The Crossings
on Mar 28, 2013 at 5:55 pm

Oh I love this so very very much. A tip for zoom zoom drivers: since its been a while, the brake pedal is the fat one second from the left. It will be your first response to use it, or you'll get a very expensive ticket, with tacked on fees, and traffi school, OR a nice fat point on your record and the ongoing increased insurance payments.
Go get 'em MVPD WHOO-HOO! :)


Posted by wtf, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 28, 2013 at 8:18 pm

Thanks Mt View for making traffic safety a high priority.

I was only almost run over twice today, so that's already a big improvement!


Posted by Thank you xxx, a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 28, 2013 at 8:26 pm

[Portion removed; make your point without resorting to offensive stereotypes.]

These pedestrian tickets are like a tax for the untrained or stupid. It's up to them to know the laws. Tickets are a good way to teach people a lesson and that might save a life.

Thanks!


Posted by A. Walker, a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 28, 2013 at 9:16 pm

Perhaps there should be speed-bumps installed at the pedestrian crossings located in the middle of the street, or removed entirely. There are a lot of new people moving to Mountain View and they aren't used pedestrians crossing at non-intersections. How many more people need to get hit before we accept the traffic realities?


Posted by pedestrian, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 29, 2013 at 8:39 am

Mid-block crosswalks are much safer for pedestrians. Most car-vs-pedestrian collisions happen when a car turns across a crosswalk and a distracted driver doesn't look for pedestrians. Mid-block crosswalks avoid this confusing and dangerous situation since cars cannot turn across the crosswalk. Yes, the city should install signs (including median signs) to make these crosswalks obvious to everyone.


Posted by Oscar, a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:16 pm

How about having the police ticket bicyclists who ride on the sidewalks? I have almost been run over by them on so many occasions when walking down the sidewalk. Really, if I were older I would seriously consider not walking around Mountain View..it's very dangerous as people on bicycles just blow by pedestrians on the sidewalks..


Posted by Bob, a resident of Blossom Valley
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:18 pm

If you want to add revenue to the city, just have an officer decoy standing at Grant Road and North Drive. 80% of right turners going to the Y or the Hospital there do not stop on a red light, or if they do, they look at you in the crosswalk and then just go.


Posted by vfree, a resident of Waverly Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:31 pm

Safety starts with the pedestrian, get rid of the iPod, put the phone in your pocket, and pay attention to the road. It's your life that ends up splattered all over the street. Those speed humps are mostly annoying and increase the rage of drivers trying to find an easy way home.


Posted by DangeorusMtnView, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:32 pm

Yeah, my wife walks to the train station daily and is almost run down once/week by someone turning into the downtown neighborhoods.


Posted by Carter Coleman, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:33 pm

The intersection of California and Castro, Downtown Mountain View is very dangerous for pedestrians. Drivers often ignore pedestrians' right away.


Posted by Steve, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:42 pm

The reporting wasn't complete... but I suspect this is a continuation of the MVPD 'decoy' program, using a shill to set motorists up for a ticket. Very enterprising of them, to see a hot topic and turn it into cash. And infinitley more popular than their old California stop racket.


Posted by I AGREE..., a resident of Rex Manor
on Mar 29, 2013 at 2:46 pm

TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS ARE A BEHAVIORAL ISSUE AND CAN NEVER BE SOLVED BY PHYSICAL MEASURES OF ANY TYPE. IT'S UP TO DRIVERS, PEDESTRIANS, AND ESPECIALLY THE CYCLISTS WHO BLOW THROUGH INTERSECTIONS AND RED LIGHTS TO BE AWARE AND MINDFUL OF OTHERS. A LITTLE COMMON SENSE GOES A LONG WAY RATHER THAN PERSONAL AGENDAS FOR MOBILITY.


Posted by Bleeding ears, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:05 pm

I AGREE,

1) If it were up to drivers, pedestrians and cyclists alone to solve the problem, nothing would be solved.

2) We have a police force whose mission is ensuring public safety. I fully support a member of that police force taking the "physical measure" of pursuing, stopping, and ticketing a driver who doesn't yield to a pedestrian.

3) The incidents that have led to this crackdown have involved pedestrians being mowed down by reckless drivers, not "cyclists who blow through intersections and red lights." Why must you dilute the issue?

4) WOULD YOU KINDLY STOP SHOUTING?


Posted by Laughing at them, a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:15 pm

You can tell the selfish driver crowd is getting nervous. Good. :)
Maybe we can go a few weeks without one of them killing another person.
Keep writing those tickets officers!


Posted by Arnold Hans, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:18 pm

I walk several blocks daily to and from the Caltrain station and it is really scary crossing several streets. There are many sensible and courteous drivers who are mindful of pedestrians in the crosswalks, however there are several who could care less about pedestrians. I have had several close shaves while in the crosswalk. A rule of thumb that I like to follow is to take my turn while at the crosswalk - I do not just assume that I have a right to step into the crosswalk anytime I get there. If a vehicle is there at the crosswalk, I like to also be courteous and allow that vehicle to pass through before stepping into the crosswalk. I do however like to have my turn to cross without fear of being shaved by a motor vehicle.
I also do want to point out that bicyclists should also be cited to ignoring pedestrians in the crosswalk - I have had several close calls with bicyclists too, who do not believe that they should yield to pedestrians. They seem to want the rights of motor vehicles but also the benefits of pedestrians at the same time.

A balance is required from all parties, be they drivers of motor vehicles, bicyclists or pedestrians. Be sensible and remember that your actions could change the lives of famiies and fellow citizens forever - let's treat folk with respect and courtesy.


Posted by GB, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:33 pm

Please patrol Rengstorff at the crosswalk at Junction. One day I counted 27 cars that did not stop!

Also, pedestrians and bicyclists please wear light colored clothing, esp. when it's dark or almost dark. Drivers can't see you.


Posted by Mari Posa, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:33 pm

How enterprising this is for the city of Mountain View! This is nothing but a continuation of the MVPD 'decoy' program, using a shill to set motorists up for a ticket. Very enterprising of them, to see a hot topic and turn it into cash, indeed.
Since they started this program, there were at least two fatal crashes in Mountain View. This is a great way to raise money but not to educate people or prevent the accidents. I wander what they will do with the money they raise; will they use it for education? Show me the results and how will you use the money and then I will trust your intentions.


Posted by Frank, a resident of another community
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:36 pm

Sorry, but I guess I'm in disagreement with most.

Northern CA pedestrians are just a little too empowered and entitled. Knowing full well their right of way, in MV I have encountered lots of peds who feel they don't need to bother to check traffic or signals before bounding into the middle of the street. And, if there's one of those annoying pedestrian signs plopped dead center of the road by the crosswalk they're even more cocky about prancing into the road.

"Hey look at me! I'm a pedestrian with my frappucino and iPod earphones! Better stay out of my way Mr. Ugly Motorist!"

On more than one occasion I'd had to jam on the brakes as they crossed right in front of my moving car, nearly causing a rear-end collision from the person behind me. But it doesn't matter! Peds have the right of way, haven't you heard?

Thanks to the MV police, who focus on this instead of the real crimes which are increasing in MV and the surrounding communities.


Posted by Decoy , a resident of Cuernavaca
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:47 pm

I was told by a witness that the MVPD's early attempt at crosswalk decoys led to an accident on Shoreline, as a car suddenly braked when the decoy darted out, and the car was hit from behind.


Posted by TT, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 3:52 pm

@Arnold Hans. I disagree. As a pedestrian I have the right of way at a crosswalk, 100% of the time. Facing similar situations, that very same driver you chose to yield to, will assume others will yield, and will proceed to "accidentally" run somebody over. The sensible thing to do is to follow the rules and not insert your own interpretation.


Posted by Witness, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Decoy, That means the driver behind was following too closely or going to fast, or both.
Its up to the following driver to leave enough room to stop safely given the speed traveled.
This is why the driver who rear ends someone is most always found at fault.
I always leave enough room to stop if the person in front of me stops abruptly. Its helpful in avoiding an at fault accident ticket.


Posted by Oh Stop, a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 29, 2013 at 4:25 pm

Its hilarious. everyone is on the same roads and we see how drivers behave, but when singled out for their killing behaviors(literally KILLING behaviors) they suddenly have all sorts of advice for how others should behave. Sorry, you can rationalize all you want. Good people accept the truth


Posted by Bob, a resident of Slater
on Mar 29, 2013 at 5:07 pm

As a driver, it is the attitude of pedestrians like TT that continue to fan the flames of this issue. I feel that attitudes like Arnolds are reasonable, courteous and safer "A rule of thumb that I like to follow is to take my turn while at the crosswalk - I do not just assume that I have a right to step into the crosswalk anytime I get there. If a vehicle is there at the crosswalk, I like to also be courteous and allow that vehicle to pass through before stepping into the crosswalk. I do however like to have my turn to cross without fear of being shaved by a motor vehicle.".
In a court of law, attitudes like TT's may be viewed as right, but on the mean streets of Mountain View, you'll be dead right. I feel that the MVPD needs to publicly re-educate the road sharing population as to the law. As we can read in this and other blogs, there are many opinions and they can't all be right, or wrong.


Posted by mike, a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 29, 2013 at 5:24 pm

We need to stop saying peds have the right of way 100% of the time. They do not. For example, a jogger, dressed overall in black, sprinting across the road at night does not have the right of way. To believe so is dangerous. If a parent pushes her childs stroller into the road from between parked cars believes that her child has the right of way, she may continue such behavior.
Besides, if a ped is struck down and injured or killed, right of way becomes meaningless.
The past tolerence by law enforcement has created a social problem, and no amount of civil engeineering will fix it.


Posted by Frank, a resident of another community
on Mar 29, 2013 at 5:43 pm

Having the right of way does not exempt you from acting responsibly and checking the traffic and looking both ways before crossing the street. You know, like your mother taught you.

Having the right of way does not exempt you from following other traffic rules, like red lights and other signals you are NOT supposed to be crossing against, as well as jay walking, which runs rampant in MV.

Having the right of way does not allow you to dart directly in front of a moving automobile that has a dangerously small chance of stopping in time to avoid a tragedy.

In summary, having the right of way does not allow you to toss all common sense and mutual respect of sharing the road out the window because you feel oh-so-empowered with your "right of way".


Posted by Delivery Man, a resident of another community
on Mar 29, 2013 at 5:56 pm

I drive in Mtn View daily (my job), and though I've seen _some_ pedestrians do as Frank describes, its extremely rare. I drive every single day at all hours and I simply don't see this enough to make me think this is the issue w/ safer streets.

But still, lets pretend that these wildings of pedestrian atrocities are going on very frequently. No laws dictate common sense. The law to enforce says you stop so rant all you want you're still getting the ticket. (Also, blind people can't look around and there are some regulars in town...be careful!)

I always seem to find time to slow for peds, I see them stage up at the curb and I stop. I go the speed limit always too, which helps in this act. This might be hy i don't think too many peds are running out in front of me. Perhaps, just perhaps, Frank, you might want to slow down and anticipate by scanning ahead. You'll find it quite easy to do if driving at the speed limit. That might also reduce the amount of pedestrians you think are hurling themselves at your car.


Posted by downtown resident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 29, 2013 at 6:39 pm

Regarding the comment about an accident created by the police decoy, I am not surprised! I was a witness to the scene on Shoreline where the police decoy was deliberately stepping in front of cars at the last second to assert his "right". I saw two cars have to hit their brakes very hard because of the decoy's timing. The scene appeared to be a scam to write a bunch of tickets to collect money and 'make a statement' that could have been made in a better way without endangering people's lives. "37 tickets" also supports this position.

MV Police Dept - I applaud you for wanting to "make drivers more aware" (really!), but please find a better way. How about information handouts at the downtown art and wine festival, for example, or newspaper articles, temporary roadside signs as people enter MV, etc? When you write unjust tickets through trickery, decoy, and an overly fine application of the law, it serves little more than making people angry and lose trust.


Posted by pedestrian, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 29, 2013 at 6:43 pm

I agree with the Delivery Man. Reckless pedestrians getting hit are very rare in this city. The majority of car vs pedestrian crashes occur when the pedestrian is legally crossing in a crosswalk. A car coming from one of the cross streets makes a left turn or right turn. The car driver may have stopped at the first crosswalk that they crossed, but when making a turn they have to remember that they will cross a second crosswalk that they did not have good visibility of when they started their turn. The car starts accelerating through its turn and all of a sudden, the driver realizes that there is already a pedestrian walking in the crosswalk. Often the pedestrian is more than half way across the street when they get hit. Even if the pedestrian does catch a glimpse of the car coming at them from behind, it is going so fast by that time that the pedestrian has no chance to get out of the way.

Car drivers need to pay more attention and remember that they will likely cross multiple crosswalks in a single intersection. The driver needs to check all the crosswalks before they enter the intersection. Still be prepared to stop at the second crosswalk since your vision may have been blocked by other cars in the intersection.


Posted by TT, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 7:06 pm

Police decoy was just simulating potential real world situations. If you have to slam on your break, then you are driving too fast for condition, tailgaiting or have very poor reflexes. When driving you are supposed to scan far ahead and side to side. Again, it is all about what is legally right. It is not about your personal interpretation or your sensibility. We all perceive and interpret things differently. Because of our differences, there are rules and laws to guide us. What maybe sensible to you might not be to me and vice versa. You cannot take upon yourself to amend certain rule just because you think it makes sense to you. To be clear, I am defending pedestrians in crosswalks.


Posted by wtf, a resident of Waverly Park
on Mar 29, 2013 at 7:37 pm

As a cyclist I ride at the speed of a wheelchair, and no faster, but I have to ride on the sidewalk. Any law that forces a cyclist to the road is a death sentence. Bicycles themselves aren't dangerous, it's the riders that are pedaling them too fast.

So it's a very delicate situation to say no bicycles are allowed on the sidewalk, but I'm for imposing a 5 mph speed limit. But saying a cycle has to be in the road between the parking lane with swinging car doors, and the speeding traffic is again, a death sentence.

Technically a bicycle is a two weels and a seat, i.e. a wheelchair, and should have more ADA protections, but the sporty and trendy cyclists are the ones that burst through stop signs and other such dangerous behavior.

I'm actually to the point of giving up bicycling and going to just buy a Hummer.


Posted by Jeff Walden, a resident of Shoreline West
on Mar 30, 2013 at 2:12 am

Jeff Walden is a registered user.

I'm just going to call out this quote from "wtf" in the previous comment, for extra visibility:

"Any law that forces a cyclist to the road is a death sentence."


Posted by I see you, a resident of Blossom Valley
on Mar 30, 2013 at 5:58 am

wtf/Jeff, Then why hasn't a cyclist been killed on MV roads lately, like in the last year or 3(maybe longer) but many peds and drivers have been killed
Most all road dangers are tied to driving behaviors. This is why the focus is on cars right now.
Sounds like the "Death sentence" you suggest simply isn't based in fact, perhaps more based in a desire to try to grab more road for selfish drivers?

PS, we know what the post was really about...the Hummer comment was a dead give away. No need to try to push buttons.


Posted by Cpresident, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 30, 2013 at 8:35 am

People here blaming everyone else but themselves need to stop blaming others and look at their own driving attitudes, and actually understand the laws.

Pedestrians always have the right of way according to the California Vehicle Code, regardless of their behavior. Do they always act rationally? No, but then again; the code is written that way wary of the fact that pedestrians are not in multi-ton machines capable of killing others. Delivery man is 100% absolutely right in his post

So whiners: Stop blaming others and stop justifying your hubris and narcissism. The world does not revolve around you.


Posted by MV Mark, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Mar 30, 2013 at 10:01 am

Delivery man, best post on this board so far. Thanks for proof there are rational people in this world.


Posted by Donald, a resident of another community
on Mar 30, 2013 at 11:41 am

Just so everyone is on the same page, here is a quote from the CVC at:

Web Link


21950. (a) The driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection, except as otherwise provided in this chapter.


(b) This section does not relieve a pedestrian from the duty of using due care for his or her safety. No pedestrian may suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard. No pedestrian may unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a marked or unmarked crosswalk.

(c) The driver of a vehicle approaching a pedestrian within any marked or unmarked crosswalk shall exercise all due care and shall reduce the speed of the vehicle or take any other action relating to the operation of the vehicle as necessary to safeguard the safety of the pedestrian.

(d) Subdivision (b) does not relieve a driver of a vehicle from the duty of exercising due care for the safety of any pedestrian within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection.


Posted by wtf, a resident of Castro City
on Mar 30, 2013 at 9:27 pm

MV Mark:

Sorry for being irrational about your death machines. I've only had 3 family members and 1 coworker killed or maimed by cars. What are the astronomical odds of losing 3 family members?

Since I got rid of my death machine it's cured my heart disease, I've lost weight, and no longer depressed.

Why don't they name cars more appropriately? How about I get a new model 2013 kidrunnerover, or I might be in the market for a used 2012 amputator or I did like the familyreducer and the maimer are nice models.

The best new model of the year is the 2013 pedestrianhunter. It actually hides the body too so you don't need to worry anymore about the ticket. Problem solved?


Posted by kathy, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 30, 2013 at 10:57 pm

To MVPD and MV Public Safety:

We need traffic calming measures on Sylvan before and after the park. We need flashing speed limit signes, flashing lights at crosswalks. The new street light and fixed neon signs have not made a difference. Cars still speed down Sylvan (a straight away) heading for the 237 on ramp.

We have already signed petitions, contacted city council and city staff, it has been years, what else can we do? Do we wait for a fatality before something happens? Pedestrians have already been hit in the crosswalks (twice that I have witnessed).


Posted by Surprised, a resident of St. Francis Acres
on Mar 31, 2013 at 6:44 am

I've noticed traffic detectors now are at the intersection on our latest pedestrian fatality; lots of measurements going on @ Phyllis and Hans. When I see them, its a reminder and I've been looking down at my speedometer. I was disappointed in myself when I kept seeing I was over the limit and still slightly accelerating. I need to slow down but the aggressive jerk who was tailgating me a few days ago, zig-zagging back and forth impatiently in my rear vies, needed more of an attitude adjustment.
OK, hesitantly I see the need for a stop sign on Phyllis at Hans. I'll deal with it. Cops with big ticket books needed in the interim. Safety first.


Posted by USED2livethere, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 31, 2013 at 7:38 am

Drivers not yielding to pedestrians is only one of the examples of poor driving on display in Mountain View. If one has a passing knowledge of the vehicle code the violations are too numerous to cite here. Reading the comments here, it is easy to see that drivers have a sense of entitlement and how convinced they are of their own self-importance. A little consideration and courtesy for others would go a long way to alleviating the traffic problems (and a lot of others)!


Posted by Ray Peterson, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Mar 31, 2013 at 5:11 pm

HI was a VTA Supervisor and Safety Training Instuctor for 25 years. I have lived in Mountain View for 15 years. I have been a Mountain View Police Volunteer for 8 years. I know Mountain View extremely well, and, am aware of all of it's traffic problems.
I agree with many of you, and, dis-agree with a few.
I personally know some of the "Traffic Officers" in the Department. They are a dedicated group, and, do their best to serve PUBLIC SAFETY.
It's not how much money they can make for the City, but, how many lives they can save! I am also aware of bicyclists and peds responsibilities. On March 28 I stopped on Villa at Hope Sts. I saw a bicyclist on Hope approaching at about 20 mph and turned onto Evelyn Avenue without even slowing down, just got eye contact with me and proceeded. I know that our Officers are also aware of these offenses, and , will be able to monitor them as well.


Posted by Jeff Walden, a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 1, 2013 at 8:41 am

Jeff Walden is a registered user.

"I see you", sorry, I guess I was being too subtle. I meant to call that bit out because I thought it was ridiculously hyperbolic. I figured brevity was best -- let it stand on its own for fullest ridicule -- but I perhaps needed a little bit more around it to make that clear.


Posted by kman, a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 1, 2013 at 2:24 pm

Good point you made Ray, EYE contact. That is the key to not having an accident. Always make Eye contact and decipher whether or not you are safe. This applies to drivers, bikers, and pedestrians.


Posted by Steve, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 1, 2013 at 3:19 pm

Kudos to our diligent traffic officers for setting up such an authentic sting, but reports here about the police volunteer's actions make them reek of entrapment. Despite popular misinformation, the vehicle code doesn't grant absolute immunity to the pedestrian. Just how many tickets actually belonged to the driver, and how many really belonged to their stooge? How many were actually infractions at all? Knowing that few of their 'marks' will challenge them in court, that they're free to write anything without consequence can make for some brazen misuses of power.


Posted by not an accident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 1, 2013 at 3:28 pm

Making eye contact really only works on narrow, slow-speed streets with 4-way stop signs or stop lights (and drivers that actually stop). On wider or faster streets, the cars are going too fast for pedestrians to make eye contact. Cars are a block or more away from you when you start crossing, so there is no way to see the driver's eyes. Also, eye contact does not work when the car is coming from behind you (and making a turn across the crosswalk). I think this "eye contact" argument is just a ploy to blame the victim. Drivers need to slow down and be prepared to stop at every single crosswalk.


Posted by tommygee54, a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 1, 2013 at 3:35 pm

The police officers are real diligent all right! In October of 2012, I turned right on a green while someone was walking in the crosswalk walking from Stierlin Rd side to the Montecito side crossing Shoreline Blvd. I was the 3rd car to turn right. BUT I was the one who got ticketed as I was the last car to turn right. Despite the fact that the pedestrian was still on the other side of the median I therefore was wrong. So I was stopped right before the bridge over Central Expressway. The cop did not accept any excuses from me.

Did I learn something? YES!!! Now if the right lane is stuck with cars, and I am the first to turn right when the green light shines, well if there is a pedestrian on the other side of the road FAR FROM ME I will wait until the pedestrian crosses the street within the crosswalk. So this means that ALL CARS IN BACK OF ME WILL NOT GO ANYWHERE until the pedestrian is safe on the sidewalk. And this includes waiting for pedestrians to cross the very wide El Camino Real!!!

Now if the pedestrain steps out of the crosswalk (as they normally do) then 'all bets are off' and I will turn right. But I still must use common sense and wait until the pedestrian is safe (while still on the street but out of the crosswalk) then proceed. Cop can't ticket me then. Pedestrian not in crosswalk. So what does this mean? PEDESTRIANS STAY IN THE CROSSWALK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Take care...


Posted by kman, a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 1, 2013 at 6:08 pm

"{I think this "eye contact" argument is just a ploy to blame the victim."

All it's meant to be is just one important tip to be safe, but if you are ignorant, then no amount of safety will protect you.

I didn't say you can always make eye contact, but remember, before that car hits you it's going to get really close-up.

If a car is a few blocks away, interesting enough, i've always been able to make it safely across without eye contact. But that was because i was totally aware of where that car was and any other car that may be around.

Also a good habit to get into before you step into a crosswalk look in all the direction a car may be going, even if it's behind you. It's a lot easier to step back on the curb, then for some lunatic driver to stop a heavy car, especially if they are distracted.

What i've always said, be aware of your surroundings, no matter if you are a driver, pedestrian or biker. It's your life, so be safe.


Posted by tommygee54, a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 1, 2013 at 6:09 pm

OOPS!!! I left out some important information; If you are about to turn right and your light changes to green, make sure that there is no one in the crosswalk. Even when someone is across the street and has stepped of into the crosswalk, YOU STILL HAVE TO WAIT!!!! The driver of the car has to wait, even though the pedestrian is away from you but walking toward you, even though the pedestrian is on the other side of the median, YOU WAIT. Cars will back up behind you but apparently SO WHAT!!! Someone will honk their horn, but again SO WHAT!!! YOU MUST WAIT. If you get a ticket for not yielding to a pedestrian, the fine is over $300.00!!!!!!


Posted by Son, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 2, 2013 at 11:06 am

My dad always gave me the eye contact tip when I was learning to drive. Never forgot it. Thanks Dad!


Posted by Steve, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Apr 2, 2013 at 2:51 pm

tommygee54: If the pedestrian was on the other side of a divided (two directions seperated by a median) roadway, there was no infraction. Just a case of the MVPD inventing laws to enforce! The whole concept of be required to stop for a pedestrian ANYWHERE in the crosswalk is also questionable. The law only says you are required to yield them the right of way.
Again, the cops are pretty sure no one will challenge them in court, and as the saying goes, "absolute power corrupts absolutely"


Posted by sparty, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 2, 2013 at 3:14 pm

These little stings are nice for the feel-good aspect. But just as useless as the stings for running lights turning left.

Every day you can find 2,3 cars running the red turning left on to Shoreline, El Monte, etc after the light on El Camino goes green for cars going south/"east." A few days of tickets doesn't do much overall.


Posted by Los Altos Resident, a resident of another community
on Apr 2, 2013 at 7:48 pm

I have to say that I resent reading the number of tickets so proudly announced by the Mountain View Police Dept when they set up traps to snag drivers in large numbers.

The mid block cross walks should either be eliminated or be equipped with the button to push to light crossing lights embedded in the roadway.
I was stopped by two rather intimidating police officers who then pointed out their "decoy" pretending to be ready to cross mid- block in a bright green pinney. I was then told that I "SHOULD have been able to see him!" It was a contrived set up which was snarling the usual lunch time traffic and making it more of a hazard. I also see these traps down by the long closed Planned Parenthood on the corner of California and San Antonio. I don't like tricks!


Posted by tommygee54, a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 2, 2013 at 8:46 pm

Thanks Steve for your comments. BUT this cop that ticketed me made sure that she told me that AT NO TIME WHILE A PEDESTRIAN IS IN THE CROSSWALK, NO MATTER WHERE THIS PERSON IS IN THE CROSSWALK, THAT A MOTORIST HAS TO GIVE THE RIGHT OF WAY AT ALL TIMES TO THE PEDESTRIAN WITHIN THE CROSSWALK, even if the pedestrian is walking away from you as you are about to turn right. And despite the fact that the pedestrian will eventually walk beyond the median, well out of the way of the motorist, the motorist STILL MUST WAIT UNTIL THAT PEDESTRIAN IS OUT OF THE CROSSWALK ENTIRELY!! To yeild them the right of way apparently THE ENTIRE TIME THEY ARE IN THE CROSSWALK.

Yes it is hard for me to figure this one out. My traffic school instructor made sure all students in the class understood this, including being told this by a cop who showed up to inform us of a few rights for the pedestrians.

I guess that we motorists just have to make others needlessly wait while we watch the pedestrians walk the entire length of the crosswalk before we turn right.


Posted by Hmmm..., a resident of Castro City
on Apr 2, 2013 at 9:58 pm

[Portion removed due to disrespectful comment or offensive language] I got caught in the "sting" and took my consequence like the man my mother raised me to be! Yes it was expensive, but I will never violate a person in the crosswalk again. Consequences curb bad behavior, excuses perpetuate bad behavior. Men need to be men and women be women! Stop whining and complaining like children and deal with your reality. If you think the cop was wrong take him to court and have your say! If you win congratulations if you lose, learn from your mistakes and get on with your life.