More sidewalk driving

Baseline and 7th Street, Phoenix.

6/24/2018 around 4pm Baseline near 7th st, Phoenix.

From the probable cause statement:

The defendant was operating a motor vehicle in the area of 700 E Baseline road where he was traveling eastbound in the westbound lanes of Baseline Road. The def proceeded eastbound through the intersection of 7th street in the westbound curb lane of Baseline Road where he drove up onto the sidewalk along the north side of baseline road  and struck the victim WHO WAS WALKING ON THE SIDEWALK

The driver/defendant, Raul Perez Parra, kept going, of course. The victim was transported in “extremely critical condition with life-threatening injuries including multiple compound fractures and internal bleeding.” .

Suspected crimes cited are felony hit-and-run, and Aggravated assault (a serious felony), and some drug charges.

Also, just coincidentally, today an in-depth story was published in the New Times, Killer Streets: Phoenix Is a Death Trap for Pedestrians Like Kacie Clark. It uses the killing of Kacie Clark on January 17th this year on a Phoenix city street as a hook but goes into great depth about the general dangerousness of Phoenix streets, yes, and sidewalks:

Around 9 a.m., a black Mercedes crossed several lanes of traffic and hopped up onto the curb. The car slammed into the slim 20-year-old, dragging her body along the sidewalk for 60 feet…

One of the stumbling blocks to change is the mindset of GOHS director Alberto Gutier; who’s primary mentality comes across as if peds and bicyclists would just stay out of the way of drivers, everything would be fine. One of his ideas (though he says it’s been “vetoed”) is a publicity campaign showing a ped figure walking between marked lines with the slogan “Use X-walks STUPID”. I wonder if Director Gutier even knows that not all crosswalks are marked? (suggested slogan: “not all crosswalks are marked, STUPID”?)

One of my general grievances with this type of article is while focusing on one aspect of traffic safety, pedestrians in this case, the shear magnitude of the problem gets marginalized. There were over thirty thousand motor vehicle crashes reported in Phoenix in 2016; only a few hundred of these involved pedestrians and a few hundred involved bicyclists. And while, yes, the ped fatalities have been rising, there remain more motorists killed in traffic crashes than pedestrians (or bicyclists). And, these numbers dramatically understate the MV problem, because those figures count only city-streets, crashes on freeways are reported separately.

Everyone, including motorists, would benefit from reducing peak motorist speeds on city streets.

Since I didn’t have anywhere else to put this…

QUADRUPLE Fountain Hills Ped Fatality

The Phoenix metro area was featured in this June 2018 USA Today news story  Death on foot: America’s love of SUVs is killing pedestrians America’s love for SUVs is killing pedestrians, and federal safety regulators have known for years. (here’s a link via usatoday’s site) Begins by relating a horrendous Fountain Hills quadruple fatlity that occured in March 2018 (?) in Fountain Hills:

A Ford Explorer driven by 27-year-old Alex Bradshaw hopped a curb and hit them (Robert and Karen Bonta) as they stood on a sidewalk. Canadians Patti Lou and Ronald Doornbos, were also struck by the SUV as they walked toward the corner in a marked crosswalk. Patti Lou, 60, died immediately; Ronald died June 12.

The “for years” part in the title refers to the studies from the early aughts, I’ve  mentioned here —  “As early as 2001, researchers at Rowan University in New Jersey predicted a deadly trend” that SUV (and light truck) impacts are more deadly to pedestrians.

Here’s the original news story about the tragedy, 3 dead, 1 critical after SUV hops curb and hits pedestrians in Fountain Hills “Three people died and one person was critically injured when an SUV hopped a curb and struck four pedestrians (March 13, 2018)”. The fourth victim died in June. where it was mentioned “It is unknown whether the driver…  will be charged with the four deaths”




One thought on “More sidewalk driving”

  1. beware median attacks too. lol kid saw one doing a uturn. karma stuck the car to the median. concrete reinforced tunnels for pedestrians?

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