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Thursday, April 11, 2013

SF's District Attorney Gascon to Crackdown on Distracted Drivers - How About Distracted Pedestrians?

Illegal Left Turn
BMW driver caught making illegal left turn.
This morning, I was watching the local news and there was a brief news story about San Francisco's District Attorney, George Gascon to start a crackdown on distracted driving.  The news reporter said the reason behind it is San Francisco's higher than state average automobile vs. pedestrian accident rate.

I personally feel that a crackdown is necessary to stop people from shaving while driving, looking down at their cell phones while driving, and those who think eating a big burrito while driving is a smart idea.  There was one instance where traffic was held up for a few minutes because a lady was playing with her cell phone while traffic in front of her was moving forward.  When she noticed the cars moving and passing her, she advances forward, driving extremely slow, and enjoying whatever is on her cell phone.

But while the need to crackdown on distracted drivers is necessary, how about cracking down on distracted pedestrians?

Distracted pedestrians are just as dangerous as distracted drivers!

I'm a good driver and I don't have any distractions that keeps my eyes away from the road.  I always scan the road ahead of me, check my mirrors regularly, look for road hazards, identify drivers that are driving erratic, etc.  But pedestrians are even more risky because they could pull off some really stupid stuff.

Just yesterday on my drive back home, here's a list of unlawful things pedestrians did while distracted:
  1. Jaywalk across six lanes of traffic and a median, including walking in front of my car without a care in the world.  The crosswalk was just 30 feet away from the person.  I gave the guy the stink eye.
  2. Another pedestrian jaywalking 15 feet from a crosswalk on a busy four lane street while admiring the vase of flowers he had in his hands, and luckily the car that made a right turn was able to stop just in time to not hit the person.  The driver making the right turn could not see the pedestrian because the cars parked next to the curb made it a blind spot.  If the pedestrian crossed in the crosswalk, the driver would have easily seen him.
  3. Talking with a friend and both decide to cross against a red hand pedestrian signal while cars with a priority green left turn arrow was turning.
  4. Another instance of crossing against the red with incoming traffic.

Akit's Opinion
We all have a shared responsibility to obey the traffic laws of our city and state.  No matter if you ride a bicycle, drive a car, or walk, the laws in place is supposed to make sure you don't do something stupid and dangerous to risk your life or others.  Even with the laws, common sense should always be used, because sometimes people will do illegal things, and you need to make sure you can react quickly to prevent injury or death.

I personally feel that George Gascon needs to also tackle the problem with distracted pedestrians.  Wearing those $200 headphones while crossing the street isn't the smartest idea because it makes it difficult to hear if an oncoming car is approaching close.  But so isn't those rightious pedestrian dicks who think that it's totally okay to cross against a red signal and they won't get hit by a car.

Reality check pedestrians: You are not Superman.  In the battle between car vs. pedestrian, car will always win, and pedestrians will be in the hospital.

I'm just hoping the police will help by ticketing pedestrians that breaks the law; just like how Gascon will demand a crackdown on distracted drivers.

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