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Thread: The Ethics of Breaking Traffic Laws

  1. #51
    dasgeh's Avatar
    dasgeh is offline Queen of Family Biking & All Things Kidical
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    Quote Originally Posted by mstone View Post
    With no stop standard, there's no practical reason for a driver to even slow down since the "yield" requirement only applies if the pedestrian is in front of the car, and the yield requirement can be met by changing speed, changing lanes, etc. When can a pedestrian ever be sure that the driver will actually yield in the absence of a stop? If you can't be sure that the driver will actually yield, you're "disregarding", right? The only way you can really tell if it's safe to cross is if 1) there are no cars or 2) the car in the single traffic lane is stopped. Without a stop standard, the law basically just gives pedestrians the finger.
    If you only step out when the car is 100% stopped, I doubt you'll ever get a chance to step out. Even when I see cars to "let" me cross, if I don't start going out as they slow, they'll speed right back up by the time they get to the cross walk. And you can't yield if you don't slow.

    And you made my point for me why the "disregard" language is problematic. I agree with Sunyata as to the reason it was put in, but there are much better ways to convey that a pedestrian should not step out in front of cars that don't have time to slow down.

    Quote Originally Posted by jabberwocky View Post
    FWIW, Maryland at least does periodic crackdowns on drivers failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. See, for example:
    https://wtop.com/montgomery-county/2...lice-campaign/

    Not sure if VA or DC do the same.
    Arlington does: https://uberpeople.net/threads/bewar...-sting.147227/

  2. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by dasgeh View Post
    If you only step out when the car is 100% stopped, I doubt you'll ever get a chance to step out. Even when I see cars to "let" me cross, if I don't start going out as they slow, they'll speed right back up by the time they get to the cross walk. And you can't yield if you don't slow.
    Agreed. Which means the onus on the pedestrian to decide when to walk into the traffic, and if they guess wrong they get the liability for "disregarding". Other jurisdictions actually require a stop, so I don't understand what makes it impossible for VA to do the same other than windshield perspective and downstate committee chairs.

    Quote Originally Posted by jabberwocky View Post
    FWIW, Maryland at least does periodic crackdowns on drivers failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks.
    MD requires a stop at crosswalks, which makes the enforcement much easier. I'd be interested to know how successful Arlington has been at making these stick. I know some local jurisdictions have tried enforcing things like this then seen them get thrown out when challenged in court and Fairfax says they won't even try.

  3. #53
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    lordofthemark is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    Depends on what you mean by "we." In the DMV about one pedestrian is killed per week by a driver, so I would assume some are being hit pretty much every day with various degrees of injury.
    I was specifically referring to incidents in the City of Alexandria, such as APD briefs BPAC on. According to our VZ plan (I would rather not get into the question of the completeness of that data) we have about 80 ped collisions a year, so a little over one a week, but not all are in crosswalks, not all are the fault of drivers, and many which are the police may choose to ticket for a different infraction (DUI, distracted driving, excessive speed, whatever) rather than failure to yield. My point was merely to point that my remembering a particular recent incident of giving a failure to yield citation is not ipso facto evidence of the kind of rarity or reluctance to do so that MStone claims. It was not a statistical study of failure to yield citations.

    I continue to encourage APD to take steps to properly cite drivers in these instances, and VZ has steps to take that forward, IIRC (and I am very interested in the results of undercover campaigns). However I also do not believe that enforcement is the primary path to pedestrian safety.
    Last edited by lordofthemark; 04-19-2018 at 04:26 PM.

  4. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by dasgeh View Post
    If you only step out when the car is 100% stopped, I doubt you'll ever get a chance to step out. Even when I see cars to "let" me cross, if I don't start going out as they slow, they'll speed right back up by the time they get to the cross walk. And you can't yield if you don't slow.

    And you made my point for me why the "disregard" language is problematic. I agree with Sunyata as to the reason it was put in, but there are much better ways to convey that a pedestrian should not step out in front of cars that don't have time to slow down.



    Arlington does: https://uberpeople.net/threads/bewar...-sting.147227/

    That thread is - fascinating.

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