Greater City Providence

WJAR: Pedestrian accidents on the rise

walkinpvd-icon“They had dark clothing on, it was night time, it was rainy, (and) it was foggy,” said Deputy Police Chief Daniel Parrillo.


“What’s the cause? There could be a number of different causes,” he said.

Distracted driving is often cited as a cause for accidents, but drivers aren’t the only ones who need to pay attention. Warwick police remind pedestrians that sometimes they’re at fault for some of these accidents, especially when they decide to cross a busy street where there’s not a crosswalk, which is a citable offence.

Pedestrians should walk to another town where there’s a crosswalk, so they at least won’t get a citation after they are mowed down.

Jef Nickerson

Jef is Greater City Providence's co-founder, editor, and publisher. He grew up on Cape Cod and lived in Boston; Portland, Maine; and New York before settling in Providence. In addition to urbanism, Jef is interested in art, design, and ice cream. Please feel free to contact Jef if you have any question or comments about Greater City Providence.

1 comment

  • Sometimes pedestrians are at fault, and the Hartford Ave incident is one of those times. There are multiple traffic lights and crosswalks on this part of Hartford Ave, and this couple chose to walk in the street wearing dark clothing in bad weather.

    In 1981, my grandmother stepped out from between two cars to call to a friend she noticed across the street; she was immediately hit and killed by a young driver. I will always feel bad for that driver – my grandmother was totally in the wrong. It was dusk, she was wearing a dark coat, and I’m sure she just appeared in this girl’s line of vision too late for her to stop. Yet the driver has to live with killing someone her whole life, as does the 19 year old who killed the two people on Hartford Ave.

    Last night I stopped my car on my own street at about 9pm to tell a woman that her dark clothing made it hard to see her as she walked in the middle of the street. Her answer: “My coat is red!” (It was indeed red – dark red.) And here I was expecting something like “Oh, wow – I didn’t realize. Thanks.”

    Some pedestrians walk safely and are the victims of careless or distracted drivers. But some – like my neighbor – just do not believe that they are hard to see in the dark. Some – like my grandmother – are careless. Some just have a cavalier attitude about cars, and want cars will stop for them no matter where they are in the road. I’m not sure how behaving as though all pedestrians are in the right and all cars are in the wrong furthers any safety cause.

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