Update: Pedestrian Hit and Injured in Main Street Crosswalk

| 9 Comments

Update: NJ.com has some additional information on the accident.


A pedestrian, believed to have just exited a train, was hit crossing Main Street in the designated crosswalk last night, walking from the train station towards the New Street parking lot. He was taken to the hospital and witnesses say he sustained some major injuries. The car on the station side of the street had stopped to let him pass, but the car on the other side did not. When the woman who hit the pedestrian got out of the car and saw what she had done, she fainted. The crosswalk on Main Street has been a derisive element in town discussion as it has been in only near-working order for some time--no one knows for sure if the lights failed to illuminate and that's why the accident happened or not.

After this unnecessary accident and another earlier one when a pedestrian was hit near Oakland Avenue where the bright shiny new solar-powered crosswalk has been implemented, there is only one question that can be posed: when will drivers actually take the responsibility their license gives them to heart? When will they actually obey traffic signals and speed limits and acknowledge that they share the road in our tiny town with any number of men, women and children on foot or on bikes? We cannot move towards a "greener" culture and invite more pedestrians to our downtown area if we cannot assure that the cars they share the streets with will be vigilant about protecting them by following national driving requirements.

 

Our best wishes go out to the victims of this accident and their families.

9 Comments

Speed bumps should be put in around the crosswalk. That will slow people down regardless of the presence of pedestrians in the crosswalk or a driver's ability to see the embedded flashing lights, which don't give enough advance warning.

The crosswalk on Route 27 is also super dark and really needs to be lit from above.

I agree that the crosswalk is too dark. Andy has a good idea with overhead lighting. The streetlights on Main seem to serve as only decorative, and not practicle. I also think those big planter barrels are distractive. And, that parking space in question should be taken out immediately. Although many people illegally park there anyway.
May God heal him.


I always thought the flashing lights embedded in the road bed were a bad idea. You can't see it well from either direction.

Light the crosswalk from above, European-style.

http://www.enlighter.org/images/2008/12/aircrosswalk1.jpg

I agree with ClearThinking that the area around the crosswalk is rather "cluttered" and that it is sometimes difficult to spot a person waiting to cross. I always slow down and look on both sides, but this takes a lot of attention so I can see how a pedestrian might be overlooked. If a person unfamiliar with the area drives through, they may be even more likely to miss the importance of checking carefully.

I think fixing the warning lights would be helpful, especially at night when it's harder to see. The downside is that it may give pedestrians an unwarranted sense of safety (crossing before checking to see if cars are actually stopping), and lead to drivers assuming that if lights aren't flashing, then there's no need to slow down and be careful.

I wish the victim a speedy and full recovery, and hopefully we can all learn something.

People should follow traffic laws, cars do need to stop for people in the cross walk. All of that is true, but there is one simple way to avoid any issues with getting off the train from NY.

You can walk to the end of the platform and you will come down the steps on the other side of main street. Very simple, then you don't have to worry about getting hit by a car. Easy solution.

Another help for drivers would be to eliminate that last parking spot right in front of the crosswalk heading out of downtown. If there is a car parked there, it is very difficult to see if there is someone about to cross the street. I have been surprised by that a few times because the car blocked my vision of them and their vision of me. I don't drive fast enough in that area that it made a difference, but it still surprised me.

So the easy solution? Walk to the end of the platform and come down on the other side of Main Street.

I was walking down the steps to my ride's car when I saw everyone looking towards the crosswalk. Initially I thought 2 cars collided when I heard someone exclaim that someone had been hit by car. I took out my phone and dialed 911 as fast as my fingers could dial. By the time I called, the Metuchen Police department was already well aware of the situation. Amazing since I called nearly minutes after the incident.

I approached the scene. I didn't stand too close. The crowd was fairly large at this point and I could see the lights coming down main street. There was a large crowd surrounding the person hit by the car. I could not see them or the extent of their injuries. I do remember 2 things very clearly.

The first being the car. The passenger side windshield was smashed in! I couldn't believe my eyes. I am no physics expert by any means. However, I would have to assume that the driver was driving way too fast down Main St. for this time of day. It's 7:20pm and your driving by one of the busier train stations in Middlesex county! The amount of force required to smash in a windshield is pretty high. Windshields are really tough to break. If you ever find yourself in a junk yard try to kick in a windshield. You will know exactly what I mean.

The second part is etched in my memory. A pair of sneakers and glasses. 1 shoe was a good 5 five feet directly in front of the vehicle... the other... a good 15 feet away on the sidewalk in front of the nail salon! The glasses were almost parallel to first shoe. This person was clearly hit very, very, hard.

I am not one who gets choked up very easily but this situation created a lump in my throat. My thoughts and prayers go out to the victim's family and friends. I would have to imagine that this person is in critical condition after sustaining such a blow.

I wish I could tell you exactly how and why it happened but I can't. Perhaps the person had assumed that the crosswalk made them impervious to harm as they casually strolled across the street. Maybe the person had the clear right of way and the driver blatantly crossed the blinking lights or ignored all traffic laws regarding the approach of a crosswalk. I suspect a combination of both but I'll never know for sure. All that being said, this is a senseless tragedy and I hope that there is something learned from it.

I really hope the pedestrian involved is doing well today. Some of my family were at Hailey's having dinner when it happened, but luckily my 4 year old son didn't actually witness it: we have to cross there all the time.

Vehicles fly right through that crosswalk, even in broad daylight, even with one side stopped. And when I am a driver, I've been honked from behind at when I stop for people there.

I've heard that fixing the lights at this crosswalk was going to be expensive. This shows price doesn't matter - they need to be fixed, even if it isn't a 100% guarantee against accidents - it is at least something. Maybe a crossing guard could be stationed there sometimes? A police presence whenever possible? Maybe a camera (one like for people going through red lights)? Eventually drivers might get the picture that they will really get hit hard with fines for not stopping. Or, if this crosswalk can't provide a safe crossing for pedestrians, then maybe it should be removed altogether. I don't know, and don't have the answers, but the way this is right now is unacceptable and dangerous.

I know this situation all too well. Last Monday while jogging at Rector and 27. "A neighbor" with her son rolled in her silver car, (I will avoid mentioning the make as I am not looking to lynch) through the stop sign and right into the cross walk while I was about 1/3 of the way in the street. I walked up to the window and asked her what she thought she was doing. She signaled for me to jog around her car. What crust! I got to the other side yelled at her, so she dropped the window, pulled off her glove and presented me the All American salute in front of her son and then drove off. Some neighbor "move" who needs you? I am here to tell you that that even though it is now tougher to do so, I have 30 days under NJ law to file a complaint. I have the plate numbers, camera photos of her actions and the law is on my side. So everyone understands, that white strip which is under the stop sign is where you are supposed to stop your car not the cross walk.

Why I am not lodging a complaint is because I suspected that this was going to happen soon again. I rather talk about it first and hopes this reaches her which is better then the 3 points and loss of a lot of money plus a night in court with the Judge. If she acted with the Judge like she did we me add 3 days in county for contempt. You think twice before you do that again with your high end silver car Lady I promise you.

You know, this is not becoming uncommon I heard someone else being hit a week or so ago, in Metuchen in main and I think the published impact of this accident does a lot more then filing a complaint. I will pray for that poor soul.

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Recent Comments

  • Michael: Speed bumps should be put in around the crosswalk. That read more
  • CinC: The crosswalk on Route 27 is also super dark and read more
  • OUTSIDER: I agree that the crosswalk is too dark. Andy has read more
  • Andy: I always thought the flashing lights embedded in the read more
  • StatMom: I agree with ClearThinking that the area around the crosswalk read more
  • ClearThinking: People should follow traffic laws, cars do need to stop read more
  • -: I was walking down the steps to my ride's car read more
  • Tyreen Reuter: I really hope the pedestrian involved is doing well today. read more
  • Fairness in People: I know this situation all too well. Last Monday while read more

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