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Halifax Crosswalk Safety Being Scrutinized

Victor Lewin - Friday, December 13, 2013

According to a professor who has been tasked with leading a review of Nova Scotia collision reports, reducing the number of vehicle-pedestrian accidents is a responsibility shared by both motorists and pedestrians. In order to share the road and stay safe, he says both should approach intersections and crosswalks with caution.

Between Dec. 1 and Dec. 5, there were four pedestrian accidents in marked crosswalks throughout HRM, which brings the number of incidents to 33 this year. The professor, along with his research team have evaluated thousands of accident reports between the years of 2007 and 2011 to determine what factors contributed to the occurrence of fatal collisions as well as bicycle and pedestrian accidents.

The data revealed that 52 per cent of all pedestrian accidents happened in marked intersections or crosswalks, and the pedestrian was not at fault in 45 per cent of the accidents. This may indicate that drivers are not paying attention in many cases; however pedestrians share some responsibility. In ten per cent of collisions, the cause was improper crossing. Visibility is a factor in four per cent of accidents and seven per cent are caused by darting in the road.

Pedestrians and bicyclists are more vulnerable in a vehicle collision and may be subject to serious injuries or even death. When someone has been injured in an accident caused by a careless or inattentive driver, the victim and his or her family may be entitled to financial compensation for medical bills incurred as a result of injures as well as wages lost during recover. A personal injury lawyer may be able to answer questions and provide legal advice to those victims, and that lawyer might help them file a claim in court.

Source: Metro Halifax, "Crosswalk safety under scrutiny in Halifax", Ruth Davenport, December 06, 2013

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