Transit Friday Continues – A Pedestrian Makes a Plea to PoPville Drivers

Photo by PoPville flickr user owash

Dear PoPville,

I really wanted to appeal to all drivers in DC and in the surrounding area who come into the city for work or for fun to please try to be more respectful of posted crosswalks. A few days ago I was almost hit at a crosswalk in front of my house and this was the closest of many near misses over the past year or so. I have taken interest in past postings on this site about crosswalk etiquette for both drivers and pedestrians. based on the discussion in the comments, I realized that drivers may not realize that I was intending to cross when I was waiting on the curb at a crosswalk. I have since begun taking a few steps into the street to about the edge of the parking spots to indicate that I intend to cross. I have noticed that this has absolutely no effect.

Despite clearly waiting to cross, dozens of cars will blow past and I even had one car try to go around a driver that was kind enough to stop for me, almost hitting me. I can sometimes make it halfway across the street but will have to stand in the middle of the street waiting for drivers on the eastbound lane to stop. Usually this means waiting for the light 50 yards down the road to cycle to red and force cars to stop. even so, they often stop in the middle of the crosswalk. The near miss that led me to write this appeal occurred with me standing in the middle of the eastbound lane waiting for a line of westbound traffic to yield or to pass. I stepped into the eastbound lane with no traffic visible coming from that direction and despite being in the middle of the lane, the driver failed to stop.

Having seen other posts, I feel it is important to state the following:

the crosswalk is clearly painted and visible on the street at a T intersection 50 yards from a stop light. It also features a stand up yellow sign on the center line stating that DC law requires motorists to stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk.

No single group of drivers are solely responsible — I have seen DC, MD, VA, NJ, GA, and CA drivers fail to yield. Most strikingly, DCPD also fails to yield. I’m not sure how the rest of the public should be expected to respect the law when the PD doesn’t. The worst, however, are WMATA buses. They really like to stop in the middle of the crosswalk when the light is red.

Really, I just want to ask everyone who drives in the district to try to be aware of pedestrian crosswalks and to respect the pedestrians who are trying to cross.

86 Comment

  • Thank you, OP.

    I would like to add:

    1. Please look both ways if you’re making a right on red.
    2. Stop the “aggressive yields.” If a ped is crossing, don’t inch forward. Just wait for the ped to finish crossing. It’s intimidating and can even be dangerous if the pedestrian slips in the crosswalk, drops something, etc.
    3. Pedestrians: Don’t tango with an automobile. If you don’t have the right of way, don’t cross if you see traffic.

  • T

    I agree that this is a big problem. Unfortunately, I don’t know of a good solution — I don’t think increased awareness is going to cut it, sadly. People just don’t care.

    • It’s a huge problem. And the solution is for MPD to enforce the law by ticketing people who don’t stop for pedestrians. The most effective thing would probably be a series of stings at crosswalks throughout the city where multiple drivers were given tickets.

      That being said, as the OP points out, the police in this city routinely break this and other traffic laws. So I don’t expect the problem to change at all.

    • How about we start the discussion with not crossing on green lights? In Hawaii, which IS part of the US, jaywalking is a ticketable offense. If you cross on a green light when traffic is approaching you’re dumb. If the road is completely visible yet vacant, that’s another story. Expecting drivers to stop for you because you feel like crossing the street on a green light is a poorly placed judgement call that can land you in the hospital or worse, if you want to live, don’t expect drivers you don’t know to watch out for your personal safety, use your own smarts. We have people that are legally blind, on drugs and/or alcohol, and people who are mentally unstable out in public driving and walking at all times. To mill along thinking the world “should work a certain way” to “preserve your rights to safety” is unreasonable and foolish. 15 seconds of waiting can save you hip replacement surgery, and possibly your life, stop reading your iPhone and cross the road safely, its your responsibility.

  • Oh look, it’s this thead again. To sum up:

    1) Know the rules.
    2) Follow the rules.
    3) Pay attention.
    4) Be respectful to one another.

    This goes to motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians. But we know this won’t happen. Motorists will continue to blow through crosswalks and speed up to make yellow lights. Cyclists will continue to go against red lights and the wrong way down one way roads, and cut across multiple lanes with out signaling. Pedestrians will continue to jaywalk and not pay attention while on their phones.

    So let’s all just post about how we all suck. Again.

  • Yes, drivers swerving around crosswalk-yielding cars are particularly infuriating and deadly. And the kicker is that after a near-miss the pedestrian has no real recourse. It generally takes someone getting injured for there to be any consequences.

    • I have to deal with this every day to get home. I get halfway across, stand in the median, inside driver slows down but outside driver doesn’t even seem to notice/care/think about why inside driver might be slowing down and blows on through.

  • It should almost be a daily plea on PoP. Makes me so sad to see moms with children in strollers waiting to cross at Grant Circle with the endless stream of cars completely unwilling to yeild the right of way to pedestrians.

    Waht irks me as a driver are folks that stand about 3 feet off the curb waiting for the walk sign, thinking somehow that extra 3 feet is so important it’s worth getting your toes run over as cars need to take a turn around you. Why not just wait on the safety of the sidewalk.

  • I agree with Denizen. The one thing I cannot understand is that whether I am driving or walking, NOBODY pays attention anymore. Pedestrians have become particularly poor at paying attention when crossing the street at red lights. Is this because we are all too distracted with cell phones, head phones and other gadgets? Sometimes I will see someone who is not plugged in just step out into the street without a thought. I grew up in the 70s and 80s, and I remember seeing those “cross at the green, not in between” public service announcements and I think we need to bring those back. As a matter of fact we need to bring back PSA’s on tv, radio and billboards for a number of things – especially in this city. Could help a little…

  • If a driver tries to run me over in a crosswalk, I just bang real hard on their car window as they pass by. Once a guy nearly got out to start a fight with me, bring it on buddy…

    • I banged on someone’s car once – dude blew through a red light and nearly missed hitting me. He got out of his car and told me that I was lucky I didn’t shot for doing that. Totally his fault, but there are seriously some insane and entitled drivers out that that just don’t care.

      So, I don’t hit cars that nearly hit me anymore, but I would love to. With a baseball bat.

      • oh my goodness, me too!!

      • yeah, I usually advocate doing that to scare the driver a bit or at least make them aware that they almost hit a pedestrian… however, this has caused me to have my life threatened 3x. I’ve concluded that drivers who drive crazy are horrible people.

        • A year or so ago I had a really unpleasant interaction with an off duty DE State Trooper (in DE obviously). Not only did he act like a total psycho but he also threatened to arrest me and charge me w/ felony evasion for not magically sensing he was a (n off duty) Trooper and pulling over. There are a lot of crazy, stupid people out there, from all walks of life. Better to just ignore them and move along.

    • Don’t hit the car – KEY the car. They won’t know til they are loooong gone.

  • I agree with everything to OP posted. I’ve even been hit by a car (not here) on a lit crosswalk, so I know the terror. That said…

    The law itself, while having great intentions, is very difficult to follow in this city. It’s one of the only places (perhaps the only place) I’ve ever been that required motorists to stop at an uncontrolled area. When you’re trying to deal with insane drivers, it’s not hard to miss those crosswalks. I would hope they would consider putting lights at these crosswalks to better inform motorists that someone would like to cross.

  • I definitely agree, but as both a pedestrian and a driver….when I walk, I made a decision to walk – I’ve noticed DC peds are way more iffy about “ooo I don’t know…should I walk?” your indecision is also dangerous. and 2) I don’t appreciate, as a driver, having to navigate safely around town when so many other drivers – including cops – are using their phones/blackberries. I thought it was illegal to text and drive, but I guess not? The number of times someone has almost hit me either from running a light/stop sign or not paying attention because they were on their phone is frightening. Add that to trying to navigate around indecisive pedestrians, it’s not an easy place to drive/walk.

    When will car companies automatically install jammers for all-but-emergency calls?

    • the texting/driving thing has GOT. TO. STOP. so many near misses with asshat fools on their phones.

      the other thing that needs to end is people who are turning trying to beat the cars going straight right when the light changes (such a poorly worded sentence…sorry). i nearly got plowed over by someone doing this. what’s another 30 seconds of waiting time? sheesh.

      • This=HUGE problem. I have been bumped in this scenario on a few occasions. Seems to be a particular issue for cabbies.

      • ah

        Not condoning unsafe driving, but at a number of intersections left turns are extremely difficult and often can be made only at the end of the cycle after the light turns red (also not safe). Beating the light at the beginning means 2 cars get through per cycle instead of 1.

      • I am usually the passenger anymore on long drives – whenever my husband and I drive home to Philly via 295, I am genuinely frightened by the amount of people on their phones/blackberries like it’s a 15 mile an hour zone. I can SEE in to their cars and just can’t believe this isn’t a crime – SO much money could be made if they’d just pull these people over. I understand needing a phone, but I support a federal requirement for them to be jamed other than for emergency calls. Even if it means no Pandora on long drives for me.

  • Perhaps pedestrians should start carrying around pieces of rebar to use to defend themselves. if a driver can threaten me with 2 tons of steel, I don’t see why I shouldn’t be able to retaliate with a few pounds of steel.

  • hold on lemme get the popcorn for the comments show

  • As a pedestrian I would never just blatantly walk out in to a crosswalk just because I knew I had the right of way. I just love it when people expect me to slam on my breaks and possibly risk getting rear ended just so they can walk across the cross walk. Use common sense and wait for the car to pass. If I see you walk across the cross walk of course I will yield for you but if I am one foot from the cross walk and traveling at 25 mph it’s easier for you to wait 5 seconds than it is for me to slam on my breaks. I’ve been flipped off and cussed at several times for not causing a wreck so someone can cross a cross walk. Common sense people, common sense.

    • Nope. Totally, completely wrong. Pedestrians have the right away on crosswalks in all circumstances.

      • A pedestrian can get in the path of a car faster than a car can notice them and stop.

        Yes, you may be right, but there’s no sense in being right and dead.

        I’m an aggressive ped. I cross wherever I want (crosswalk or not, light or not), but only when I know it’s safe. I’ve never come close to being hit. I don’t get what people are complaining about when they say they’re almost hit all the time. If that’s true, you’re walking at the wrong times. It’s not that hard. Don’t think that the crosswalk is a shield. The only “shield” you get is a red light or a stop sign. Look both ways, mentally calculate the amount of time any visible cars will take to get close. It also helps to read the “body language” of cars and make eye contact with drivers where possible.

        • this, plus a million.

          come on, people.

          almost hit? i’ve never been almost hit, even when i jaywalk. LOL.

          • You absolutely cannot assume that pedestrians are at fault when they get hit. Here’s an anecdote:

            In one November morning, I was hit while crossing Eckington Ave. as I continued on FLorida (part of the horrible Wendy’s circle at Fla x NY). The walk sign was on for me, and I had more than 30 seconds left. In addition, the cross-walk is painted with horizontal stripes to make me more visible. I was wearing a jersey with a bright white, wide reflective stripe across the shoulders. I saw a car approach toward me in the right-hand turn lane of Florida Ave. It paused, so I assumed it saw me and I proceeded forward.

            That’s when the driver accelerated into the turn and hit me. Luckily, it was going slowly, so I was only bruised. Still, she knocked me down.

            Then, the driver got out of the car and yelled at me. Her reasoning was that she had a green light. People rolled down their windows to tell her that she was totally wrong, and I was in the right.

            So, are you saying, like the driver, that this was somehow MY fault?

            wylie, you should be happy that you haven’t been hit, but try not to consider it an intellectual failing in people who have been. You can’t control all circumstances.

    • Except it usually isn’t five seconds. I often have to wait for a long stream of cars to finish passing, usually until the light two blocks down changes assuming no other cars turn onto the street, because no one will yield. At the intersection near my house, I’ve tried inching out onto the street to make it clear that I intend to cross and to make myself visible from a distance and cars never stop, despite the FOUR yield to pedestrian signs.

    • And what about intersections such as 15th and Eye NW where you as a pedestrian have five seconds to step off the curb and into the crosswalk before the little white flashing man turns to little red flashing man? Trust me, if you give an inch, drivers take a mile. At intersections like that, you have to plow ahead or forget crossing.

    • just… wow.

      25mph should be incredibly easy for you to stop from. are you baiting or are you really this horrible?

      • It should take a car about 30 feet to completely stop when going 25 mph. It also takes 25 – 50 feet to react and hit the brakes in the first place. So, yes, there is a real danger that you’ll get hit if you step into a crosswalk and the car is less than 100 feet away and going very slightly over the speed limit.

  • I completely agree with the OP. I live near Washington Circle and every week I see at least 4 or 5 cars blow through the red lights at the crosswalks in the circle as pedestrians are crossing AND I’m not talking about right after the light has changed, I mean the light has been red for some time.

    Everyone needs to pay attention, including pedestrians. Don’t just walk because you have a walk signal, make sure you look both ways (a few times!) because drivers are in a rush.

  • The law is that drivers must stop for pedestrians who are “in the crosswalk”.
    – Not for pedestrians on the side of the road
    – Not for pedestrians who want to cross
    – Not for pedestrians who are in a median island

    In. The. Crosswalk. If you are pedestrian, you MUST wait to cross when it is safe. It is not your right to walk into the middle of traffic, and cars do not have to stop for you just because you WANT to cross.

    • Addendum: Unless it’s at a stop sign, in which case they must stop and let you cross.

      • devoe

        Agreed – I sympathize w/ the OP and have lobbied successfully to get pedestrian safety measures enacted in my neighborhood, but the way the OP describes it, (s)he does not have the right of way.

        • Disagree with your assessment of whether the OP has the right of way. She specifically stated that she walks into the crosswalk and cars still speed by.

    • I was the poster on this.

      Thanks for the clarification. However, there is no center median, just a center line. when i’m standing on it, cars continue to blow past in both directions. I’m unclear as to where you assume the crosswalk begins. I do not stand on the side of the road, but about 5 feet in the crosswalk to see around parked vehicles on the side of the road. This constitutes in the crosswalk. I am not sure how else to interpret this law.

      I also do not jump into traffic or check my blackberry while i’m crossing.

      I appreciate people who stop, but remain cautious because — as i explained in my initial posting — people will try to go around cars kind enough to stop and have almost hit me. This is why it often takes me time to cross. I want to make sure the cars behind the nice person also stop.

      Lastly, i do believe that it wouldn’t kill me to wait 58 seconds to cross. I also don’t think it would kill a driver to stop and wait 5 seconds to allow someone to cross.

      Yes, we have these conversations often. I was simply only trying to inspire people to remain aware of pedestrian crosswalks and be cautious in and around them. It is everyone’s responsibility.

  • 1) Wait for slow moving German car with Virginia plates
    2) Dive onto their hood
    3) Retire early with a few bruises

  • This will get me so much hate, but here it is:

    Sorry, the “always stop for peds” law is stupid. A pedestrian has one thing they need to do: not get hit by a car. A driver has to monitor other cars, their speed, people on the side of the road, etc.

    I’m not saying they should be able to run people over with impunity, but for the love of god, who the hell cares if you have to wait an extra 2 minutes at a crosswalk? And if you get hit by a car, that is nobody’s fault but yours. A 2 ton shiny metal machine does not just sneak up on you. You are either not paying attention or they are actively trying to hit you.

    This is coming from someone who doesn’t even have a car, just an ounce of common sense.

    • I understand what you are saying, but sometimes you think a car is going to stop because, well, they have a stop sign. I have been nearly hit multiple times by cars blowing through stop signs.

      • Same here. It’s really bad by my house. There’s a stop sign and the end of a block. And a traffic light at the end of the next block. When the light is green, people BLOW through that stop sign just so they don’t miss the light. Cause, you know, the extra 52 seconds they sit at the light is really going to mess up their day.

        MPD should just park an incognito car there. They’d meet their ticket quota after one rush hour.

        • ah

          You should ask them to. Maybe I’m just “lucky” in our neighborhood (PSA 2) but cops will often respond to requests for enforcement of that sort and will actually do it periodically for a couple of weeks.

        • The most effective solution in my experience is to petition your ANC for speed bumps.

    • +1

      i am always amazed at pedestrians who will step into a crosswalk and start walking across the street without even looking up at traffic. ok, yes, you are within your “rights” to do this, but your rights won’t keep you out of the hospital if you’re hit by a car.

      same deal with the idiots who ride their bikes in rush hour traffic on roads like rhode island avenue – though I have noticed a decline in the number of morons doing this recently.

      • Please keep in mind that the things you describe may be annoying to you, but they are *legal*. Bikers are allowed to bike on Rhode Island Avenue during rush hour, and pedestrians are allowed to use a crosswalk at any time, cars coming or no cars coming.

        • i’m not saying these things are illegal, i’m saying they’re idiotic. and i don’t think they’re idiotic because they’re ‘annoying’ to me – i think they’re idiotic because they’re likely to get people hurt or killed. biking on rhode island avenue during rush hours is a straight-up stupid thing to do. it’s just that simple. legal, but dumb.

      • Yeah…Bikers should not be on the road at rush hour. They shouldn’t even be allowed to work 9-5 jobs.

        Eric, say hello to your fellow lazy car-driving friends for me.

        • I haven’t driven a cars in years and I’m not a bike rider either, but I cringe when I see bikers navigating streets like RI Ave and 14th during rush hour. Yes, they have a right to be there, but I certainly wouldn’t trust drivers to see me when there is so much car traffic to navigate. Obviously, the bikers who do ride on congested roads feel differently. I don’t this Eric’s statement was a biker vs. driver type comment.

    • With three tons of metal comes great responsibility. You don’t have a right to drive. I do have a right to walk.

      • You can reverse that just as easily though. When you are walking across a road that three ton hulks go 35 mph on you have great responsibility as well. It’s a whole lot easier for a pedestrian to watch for cars and wait until there are none than for every driver to stop and wait for every pedestrian who thinks that it’s a great idea to cross NY ave at rush hour.

        I guarantee that many of the people who bitch about people not stopping while they are walking are the first ones to bitch about traffic not moving while they are driving. You can’t have it both ways.

        • Again, *you* do NOT have a right to drive a hulking 3-ton piece of machinery — it is a privilege that can be taken away. Every human being has a right to walk. In some cases, it’s a necessity if you do not own a car. Can you not understand that that hulk of machinery is a potential weapon and therefore you must be as cautious as possible? Too many Americans treat driving as an entitlement. It is not!

    • It just sounds like you’re impatient and you can’t drive. All drivers have to do is let pedestrians cross

  • This happens all the time when I’m trying to cross Pennsylvania Avenue by the Library of Congress.

  • 95% of cars with MD tag alwasy do something crazy on Washington DC streets. You don’t beleive me, next time you see a crazy car, check it out.

    • Worth knowing: Maryland just recently began administering it’s “road test” for driver’s licenses on actual roads. As recently as a couple years ago, it was administered in a parking lot. Most Maryland drivers did not even have to demonstrate ability to interact with other traffic in order to get their license.

  • I think I have said it many times on here before – when I lived in Boston, they had undercovers walking in the crosswalks and gave out $50 tickets to cars that violated (motorcycle cops were 10 yards up pulling people over). The city made so much revenue the few days this was going on and a lot people learned their lesson. Win/Win. They should do this at crosswalks and people blocking the box. Of course someone is going to come on here with the, everyone makes mistakes argument…but that is BS, if you keep getting away with your mistake you start to think it is ok and it is not. Don’t run pedestrians over and don’t block the box!! Trust, if people started getting $50 tickets for those infractions, things would change with the quickness.

    • I used to live in Boston, too. A friend failed to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk, and was fined $50 per pedestrian. Gotta say, I think that idea has real merit.

      • The police in this town can’t be bothered to enforce traffic laws which is really what all this comes down to, a lack of enforcement. Lets not add additional duties that will never be fulfilled. Crime concerning the quality of life and safety of DC residents and visitors has always been neglected. Until enforcement begins this behavior will continue.

        • Couldn’t agree more.

          I have no idea why the cops in DC are so f’ing lazy, but I’m pretty sure a driver could do donuts in a crosswalk filled with 3 year olds and I guarantee that DC’s finest wouldn’t do a thing about it.

  • novadancer

    while I agree with most of this, the one thing that really irks me is when I stop to let someone cross (cross walk in the middle of a road NOT at a light) and they take their sweet time and give me attitude. And no…we are not talking about someone with an impairment but a deliberate let me see how slow I can walk…

    • you sound like the kind of person who believes the universe is out to get you. I guarantee you nobody has ever done this to you purposefully unless you were being a massive dick.

      chill out.

  • This is a big problem on Vermont Ave NW between H & I. The uncontrolled crosswalk gets lots of use by people coming out of the McPherson Square metro, and because of the bend in the road combined with the constant buses and vans double parking at the VA, there is really no way to know if cars are coming until you start across the street. I have lost count of the times I have almost been hit there by speeding drivers trying to make the light to turn left at H St., and I do my very best to watch for traffic. I realize that the bend in the road is also partially responsible for cars not being able to see pedestrians as far in advance as usual, but there is definitely time to slow down and stop if you are going anywhere near the speed limit. The fact is that most drivers either don’t know the law or just don’t care.

  • I was nearly killed by a VA driver while jogging and crossing 16th Street up past Alaska Avenue. I was clearly in a crosswalk and he saw me for a long time as I made eye contact and he still failed to yield. DC police need to do more about enforcing the pedestrian right of way.

    Instead of parking tickets they could issue failure to yield tickets.

  • Two types of intersections in DC make it especially bad: one is the dog legs of diagonal roads. When people turn off a diagonal road onto a straight one, they don’t slow down because it’s a soft right instead of a hard one. that is deadly to pedestrians.
    The other is people turning left onto one-way roads. 75 percent of my near misses as a pedestrian are such drivers. They’re busy looking for cars and don’t look for pedestrians.
    Why is DC so bad about enforcing traffic laws by the way? It could pay for itself if they hired more officers to traffic.

  • Also, just a random heads up. If you’re crossing 23rd, southbound at I, heading for the GW Hospital entrance or the Metro, back the hell up from the curb. Whatever westbound busline that is, they hug the curb and pull in very fast to that stop. Somebody’s going to get killed w/ a bus mirror one of these days.

  • I once got hit by a driver who decided to roll through a stop sign at a busy controlled intersection, after I had been waiting my turn to cross. I saw him approaching, but since it was my turn after letting two other cars go and he was supposed to, you know, actually stop at the stop sign, I started crossing. As I was already halfway into the intersection, I thought, “This guy doesn’t look like he’s going to stop.” Sure enough, he rammed into me with his SUV. Since I’d seen him coming and he’d had to slow down due to the traffic pattern, I’d been able to brace myself and wasn’t injured aside from a little soreness. The really offensive part was that even after seeing that he’d hit someone, he started screaming at me as if it were my fault he wasn’t obeying traffic laws (namely, stopping at a stop sign and yielding the right of way) and then just drove away.

    Since I walk all the time, I do try to make an effort to be a responsible and courteous pedestrian. I’ve seen drivers say that pedestrians should realize that it’s harder for them to slow down, which I get, but it seems that drivers are often unwilling to make concessions of their own. Even if I had the right of way, I’d never cross in front of someone speeding in my direction, because there’s much more at stake for me. But in my experience, nine times out of ten, you CAN slow down, even if it’s a slight inconvenience. (I do realize that it might be risky if it interferes with the flow of traffic, etc. but those occasions are much more rare, at least from what I’ve witnessed and experienced.) So more often than not, you’re simply prioritizing your convenience in not having to slow down over my ability/right to cross. And that’s fine. But by the same token, if it’s raining or freezing and you’re far enough away that you’ll have enough time to slow without having to slam the brakes and cause a pileup, then I’m going to prioritize my desire to spend less time outside while you’re in your dry, heated car. I think that’s only fair.

  • Was nearly hit yesterday while I was crossing the street. Middle and right lane cars stopped for me and left lane car nearly hit me as I was crossing through that lane. I don’t think a post on PoP will help this problem.

    I have decided that I will NOT cross anywhere other than at lights if it is night time or if it is a generally busy road. It is worth it to walk a block or two out of my way in order to avoid being crushed by a car.

  • Yield to things that can kill you.

  • I missed all the previous comments, but how about we start having people push strollers with a watermelon inside, in front of non-yielding cars? It will cause a few fender benders but it would definitely stir up local news and increase awareness.

  • thebear

    The District could make a freakin fortune if they put cameras at Dupont Circle that issued tickets for people ignoring the No Turn on Red signs, and particularly the asshats who disregard the “straight only” arrows for Mass Av exiting on both sides. I can’t tell you how many times I have nearly been hit by cars violating those over my 20 years here. And these violations have gotten even worse with people blabbing on phones/texting.

    Yeah, there are plenty of oblivious peds (like the chick who was busy texting, walked right past an MPD cruiser while ignoring a Don’t Walk, ignored him when he honked at her, and then cussed him out when he gave her a ticket)…but, like it or not, drivers do have an extra responsibility for making sure they are fully paying attention to driving in a congested urban area and do their best to avoid incidents. Stay off the f*ing phone while you’re driving, especially Jag, BMW, and other snobmobile drivers who think they have some kind of special privilege to ignore any rule or law that might inconvenience them in any manner.

  • It is a real problem…I see far too many near misses at cross-walks. In fact, I recently saw a cop, at the corner of Webster and Georgia, blow his horn and his siren at a older man crossing at the zebra stripes. The man was already half-way across the intersection, was visibly startled by the noise, and jumped. What really got me was the fact that, after the pedestrian had gotten out of the way, the cop car continued to idle along at 25 miles per hour, obviously not on his way to an emergency. If the police won’t respect pedestrians, why should any driver?

  • At the intersection of 15 and N this morning, I was almost accosted by a driver who didn’t think he should have had to stop for me in the crosswalk. This was IN SPITE of the fact that there are clear signs stating cars must stop for pedestrians.

    After he started yelling at me, he jumped out of his car and asked me “What the f* I was doing?”

    I responded that I had the right of way and was paying attention. He was required to stop for me as a pedestrian.

    I walked away. He got back in his car and slowly followed me down N street towards the Scott Circle. Continuing to yell at me and again once getting out of his vehicle.

    I was legitimately worried this man was going, to use his terms, “to f* me up”.

    Be angry at what other people are doing but stalking them and threatening them with physical violence is the refuge of a jerk.

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