Monday, April 29

Crosswalks are important, kids

The street outside my apartment complex is a high-traffic one. It's also a popular school zone, with slower speeds required in the morning and afternoon. The afternoon time frame is the worst for any driver, because we're stuck going super slow, in traffic, with teenagers bolting across the street, from the McDonald's on the west side, to the bus stops on the east side. These kids though, are the bane of all the drivers' existence, due to their penchant for running across the street, between cars and without any regard for the crosswalks. I admit to having two close calls with the kids myself, once where a boy thought it would be funny to push a girl in the street in front of me and then pull her back by her backpack without her prior knowledge, and another time when a kid ran in front of me trying to cross the street to get to friends.
Today, on our way home from picking up Sydney, I saw an obvious result to these kids' behavior: a sedan with a lady outside her driver's side, and a teenage girl sitting on the grassy center median, surrounded by her friends. I assessed the situation to be that the girl ran across the street without caring for the cars, and that the lady wasn't prepared for her to jump out in front of her car, and then the two met with unfortunate circumstances.
I have to tell you, I feel worse for the lady driver than I do for the kid. I know too well how these kids run across the street, and I know how easy it is to not see them jet out from the next lane. They never use the crosswalks (and there are plenty of them), and they have no regard for the drivers. Now, since the driver was in the school zone, and there was traffic going even slower, I doubt the girl had anything more than a few bruises to show off after the incident. I'm hoping that the whole situation resolved itself so that no one was hurt too badly.
But still, maybe seeing one of their own get hit by a car will make the rest of the kids a bit more careful. Or maybe they'll use a crosswalk.

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