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Pedestrian Crossings – Pedestrian beware

By Peter Holland - 9 July 2008 36

From my office window, I get to see one of the 2 pedestrian crossings on Townshend street in Phillip. I have seen all manner of accidents, near misses and closer encounters (that the pedestrians would wish for). My questions are:

How many people slow down for pedestrian crossings, or take the time to check that the crossing is free?

Who is exempt from stopping at a pedestrian crossing, can the elderly get away with just driving through and waving at the bemused pedestrian? (occasionally, this has been me on the crossing)

what is the speed limit down Townshend street anyway? (there aren’t any signs)

What’s Your opinion?


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36 Responses to
Pedestrian Crossings – Pedestrian beware
jakez 1:08 pm 09 Jul 08

caf said :

*technically* they didn’t give way if the pedestrian was either on the crossing or within 2 metres of either side of it (this applies regardless of whether the pedestrian looks like they’re going to cross or not).

Twas just a joke.

However apparently I don’t give way properly. Oops.

H1NG0 1:05 pm 09 Jul 08

The worst crossing is the one near the University in Belco. At night, its damn near impossible to see people crossing the road. I wouldn’t mind betting a large sum of money that someone has been killed there. I always wait for pedestrians if they are waiting to cross the road. Its a shitty mentality that drivers don’t they they need to stop unless the pedestrian actually forces themselves to walk in front of the car. Its so bad that I have had several pedestrians give a thank you wave when I stop to let them cross the road at a crossing in disbelief.

caf 12:49 pm 09 Jul 08

*technically* they didn’t give way if the pedestrian was either on the crossing or within 2 metres of either side of it (this applies regardless of whether the pedestrian looks like they’re going to cross or not).

PeraPHon 12:26 pm 09 Jul 08

astrojax said :

when training to get a licence one is instructed to always slow down and look for pedestrians

Don’t know about ACT, but in NSW you will fail your P1 test if you don’t slow down and cover the brake pedal, just in case someone runs out onto a crossing from nowhere. This is second nature to me.

However the idiots who cross the road a) where there is no crossing, b) at night and c) right in front of you when you’re turning a corner and were looking to make sure that there was no oncoming traffic on the right almost deserve to get hit.

Nearly hit some young kid last night, couldn’t have been a day over 14. Just about to accelerate out of a left turn and all of a sudden this young smegger was there, running in front of my car. No sense of self preservation in today’s youth…

peterh 12:16 pm 09 Jul 08

The Brad said :

I know the pedestrian crossings on Townshend St quite well, and drivers seem to be notoriously zippy on that street. I’d like to draw a parallel with the number auto-servicing establishments in that area, and employees with powerful engines.

I think that you will find, since the Police motorcyclist turned up in phillip, I believe that it is his new beat, that the number of auto servicing employees doing this have diminished. I was informed that he visited a few to let them know that he would be watching them.

unfortunately, he isn’t here at 4.00pm and onwards, and the rain yesterday is only a catalyst for the worst examples of driving I have ever seen, particularly when I have been in the middle of the crossing – the signpost won’t save me…..

jakez 11:47 am 09 Jul 08

The Brad said :

If someone does not heed the give way to pedestrians, and passes too closely, I’ve found a whack on their boot sometimes makes them slow down and check to see if they hit me. Hopefully, this teaches them to back off a bit next time.

Well technically they did give way, they just timed it really well…

Holden Caulfield 11:45 am 09 Jul 08

The Brad said :

If someone does not heed the give way to pedestrians, and passes too closely, I’ve found a whack on their boot sometimes makes them slow down and check to see if they hit me. Hopefully, this teaches them to back off a bit next time.

I’m not familiar with the Townshend Street corssings myself, but at some of the ones around the Canberra Centre it’s nigh on impossible to get through them without being a little bit creative. If I’m walking through some of those and there’s a posisble gap for the car I’ll often wave them through. Sucks though when you try to do the right thing to let a car through and some bone/airhead just walks straight past you making the car wait even longer, haha.

Holden Caulfield 11:42 am 09 Jul 08

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy said :

I generally throttle off and have a good look – one of my fears is hitting a pedestrian when driving.

Same. And the crossing in between the High Court and Environment is especially tricky on the drive home from work at this time of year as it is so poorly lit. The other one I regularly drive past is the one near the cop shop on London Circuit. With cars parked close by it can often be difficult to see people approaching said crossing. Therefore I’ll always do my best to check as best I can before rumbling on through.

At crossings I’m more than happy to wait my time for pedestrians, but the dumb cyclists and pedestrians that walk through that Hobart Place car park without a care in the world must have a death wish. Even worse is when some fkers see you coming but still walk out in front of you.

BenMac 11:07 am 09 Jul 08

I do make it a habit of looking to make sure no one is at the crossing. But, as a pedestrian, I can’t believe the amount of people who just walk out into the street believing the car will stop for them. If I come to a cross walk, and there are cars coming, I stop and wait until I can see the cars slowing down.

I think it’s a 50/50 thing. Both cars and peds should be responsible.

The Brad 10:54 am 09 Jul 08

I know the pedestrian crossings on Townshend St quite well, and drivers seem to be notoriously zippy on that street. I’d like to draw a parallel with the number auto-servicing establishments in that area, and employees with powerful engines.
The other problem there is people who park, legally, just before the crossing, making it difficult to see a pedestrian who steps out without notice.

If someone does not heed the give way to pedestrians, and passes too closely, I’ve found a whack on their boot sometimes makes them slow down and check to see if they hit me. Hopefully, this teaches them to back off a bit next time.

VYBerlinaV8_the_one_ 10:47 am 09 Jul 08

I generally throttle off and have a good look – one of my fears is hitting a pedestrian when driving.

Jonathon Reynolds 10:46 am 09 Jul 08

ACT Road rules:
http://www.tams.act.gov.au/move/driver_licence/Road_Rules_Handbook

Pedestrians on pedestrian crossings always have right of way.
Bicycle riders who fail to dismount across a pedestrian crossing are fair game…

captainwhorebags 10:24 am 09 Jul 08

I always make a point of looking for pedestrians, instead of just glancing.

This is especially true around Woden Plaza when they pop out off the footpaths very quickly.

If a mounted bicycle rider sees me, and we make eye contact, I usually drive through. If there’s any doubt that he’s going to stop, then I’ll give way. Cyclists who dismount get the full courtesy accorded to pedestrians.

fnaah 10:21 am 09 Jul 08

Astrojax, no it doesn’t make you strange.

I slow down for crossings, and watch for cyclists who don’t realise (or don’t care) that they’re supposed to get off and walk their bikes across.

No signs = 50km/h is correct.

astrojax 9:57 am 09 Jul 08

what is the speed limit down Townshend street anyway? (there aren’t any signs)

so, that would make it a suburban street and so 50kph, then?

when training to get a licence one is instructed to always slow down and look for pedestrians, who have right of way anyway, which is a reason they are prominently signposted… or has driving become an even more blinkered pursuit these days? i even slow down and watch further afield for cyclists at crossings i know to be frequented thus. does this make me strange?

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