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View Full Version : Hazardous "Zebra" pedestrian road crossings



Ev
25-06-2006, 01:33 PM
Why do we have pedestrian crossings?
Pedestrians account for around 15 percent of deaths and 11 percent of serious injuries on Victorian roads. They are four times more likely to be killed in a crash than all road users involved in road accidents.
Noone would want too many more crossings and with statistics like this the arguments that the established crossings save lives doesn't look clear, are they good for anything? I question?

I propose a world without them they are a danger to pedestrians and motorists alike;
It seems they are a danger people are hit on a regular basis aren't they... well it gets on the "NEWS" you would remember them.

Many times I approach them anxiously awaiting someone to suddenly step out cause they have right of way and think that is all they need. Rather than correctly waiting for vehicles to stop are show intent so.
Other times on a quiet road I am so focussed on my own safety that I fail to notice a crossing and once again joe public chooses to cross inappropriately when I am coming rather than showing consideration and walking for 5-10 seconds along the road let me pass then safely cross causing me some anxiety.

All the roads I know in WA can be safely crossed by any but the most impaired no problems.
As for busy roads with no traffic gaps my experience is that you as a pedestrian choose suitable places on your route and just engage traffic and stop it if necessary eg Bali Denpasar style or ask someone nearby who can for height impaired (wheelchairs kids etc)

And the inconsiderate people who press the walk button and just cross when it is safe anyway but cause the traffic to stop completely ignorant of cause and effect of their actions resulting in poor traffic flow and greater driver mental tension and associated hazards.

School zones flagged crossings most the time an attendant could just teach the kids how to... you know look left look right, wait etc these kids will not have flag men all their way home. Although that said mum use to meet us kids after school and walk home with us. (sssshhhh also once went to overtake a slowing truck in my car which obscured my view of the flagman on 4 lane road as I rounded the truck I saw the young kids and flagman, hard braking little squeak pulled up legally clear but 6 young faces lookin at me and an angry lookin flagman it was still pretty close and someone speeding, impatient and less skilled than me would have hurt someone)

Everything can not be made safe cotton wrapped etc according to the lawmakers pedestrians must follow inconvenient possibly expensive to break laws too...

The over regulation of our roads has made the traffic flow poorly, unengaging in concentration(eg look at light stop go sleep etc) , unpredictable and hazardous.

I expect supporting comments on this forum (smarter like minded M/C types)

However when this topic is done it would be good for public dialogue to put it somewhere else and see if it gets a completely different reaction, which I fear it will.

.

JamesSpelt
25-06-2006, 01:52 PM
SUPPORT to some extent.

Here in WA drivers treat zebra crossings like they're invisible, which makes for dangerous situations when Joe Bloe pedestrian likes to enjoy his right of way privs.

From experience in other Australian states (NSW, VIC), zebra crossings get all the respect they deserve and drivers tend to treat them like a stop sign, or give way sign when no pedestrians are in sight.

I would see a compromise of zebra crossings only in 40 kmph zones, where drivers are already paying extra attention to their surroundings. This would also mean that crossings are also going to right where they're needed - school zones, shopping strips, etc.

Good topic btw vfrev

rod
25-06-2006, 02:22 PM
Yeah, Zebra crossings are pretty dangerous. If I use one as a pedestrian I never trust that the cars are going to stop.

What is my biggest frustration with WA traffic is how slow and controlled the intersections are. The traffic lights takes absolute ages to cycle, left turn slip lanes are usually controlled and those intersections where each direction of traffic goes and then the whole thing stops for pedestrians are a waste of time. When I walk to work along Plain street in east perth I have to wait for ages at the intersections for the green man. So I just check the traffic and cross the street. Heaps of people here jaywalk - I'm guessing they're sick of standing around because of the stupidly slow traffic lights too.

-J-
25-06-2006, 02:23 PM
Ok fair enough - as I have said in other posts kids have been prvoven to have
tunnel vision, and while there are no flagged crossings other than around the schools
9 times out of ten the parents are walking theses kids home (i said 9 times). The other thing
to be aware of is that in this day and age primary school kids generally dont walk home by
themselves, and highschool kids have a better "perception" of roads (so they say) do.

I personally believe that they should have better maintained pedestrian crossings in WA. The best I've seen
I think is along Scarborough beack road (north Perth) and main street Osborne Park, both crossings I am thinking about both have flashing lights, similar to what is on the east coast for school crossings

I'm not sure if its up to main roads or local goverment to maintain them ( I think its local gov), but I think all
pedestrian crossings on main roads should have lights like the ones mentioned above, as well as school zones (especially the crossing outside Mercy College on Mirrabooka Ave, the guard there just jumps out into
oncomming traffic, one day he'll get hit).

NB: this is just my opinion on the matter I do not wish to be keyboard bashed

-J-

thro
25-06-2006, 02:24 PM
If motorists comply with their use correctly (i.e., slow down ready to stop when they see the sign), and pedestrians don't just blindly assume people will stop, there's no real problem with them.

The reason we have them is that painting a few lines on the road and putting up 2 signs = way cheaper than building a pedestrian bridge.


Personally, I have no issue with them... either as a pedestrian or a motorist.

-J-
25-06-2006, 02:33 PM
If motorists comply with their use correctly (i.e., slow down ready to stop when they see the sign), and pedestrians don't just blindly assume people will stop, there's no real problem with them.

The reason we have them is that painting a few lines on the road and putting up 2 signs = way cheaper than building a pedestrian bridge.
Personally, I have no issue with them... either as a pedestrian or a motorist.
[/b]

^^^Point^^^

Oh I thought those ziggy lines where for doing burnouts :P

What I was just trying say I think they should be uniformed throughout

dr00
25-06-2006, 06:17 PM
IMO the thing that wont die should have right of way :P ie. if a car hits a person the person will die so it is the persons responsibility to keep themself out of the way of the car. its not ideal but it fits with human nature. how many times does a car pull out on you and you know if you were in a bus they wouldnt have done it? people are much better at protecting their own life than protecting other peoples.

Mirkz
25-06-2006, 06:28 PM
are brick roads considered crosswalks aswell ?
I've lost count the amount of people who have just crossed in front of me when slowly going through cafe strip in freo whilst I was in the car, and some don't even look, they assume we will stop! Not to mention they don't move their ass when they do it, they just waddle across like a bunch of ducks. Its particularly bad at night when there are clubs etc open.
just wondering.. :P

sathid
25-06-2006, 08:24 PM
there are a lot of countries where pedestrians have right of way at intersections. In the city, pedestrians have right of way over turning traffic iirc.

ever been a pedestrian in melbourne? the cars that are turning (in the city) stop to wait for pedestrians to cross. the traffic there seems much better during the day, and people walk everywhere.

there was some research done that found that putting people and cars together (i.e. shared accessways) actually increases safety as people are more aware.

that said, it would be good to have flashing lights so that when someone wants to cross they can push the button to let cars know. Theres a crossing in vic park (the one near totals) that used to be really bad, as there was car parking all the way up to it, and the island and signs in the middle of the road made it difficult to notice the crossing. the cars parked on the road made it hard to see people crossing.

they've since fixed it and visibility is 100% better.

WHO-NIN
25-06-2006, 09:08 PM
IMO the thing that wont die should have right of way :P ie. if a car hits a person the person will die so it is the persons responsibility to keep themself out of the way of the car. its not ideal but it fits with human nature. how many times does a car pull out on you and you know if you were in a bus they wouldnt have done it? people are much better at protecting their own life than protecting other peoples.
[/b]

I've been in transport for a number of years in a variety of roles and cars will still pullout in front of trucks! :blink:
But you should see the f&#ks stop when a truck pulls out infront of them!! :lol: :lol:

And whats with "on ramps" get the bottom doin' 60 and wonder why you can't merge with traffic doin' 100!!!! freakin' cagers!:angry: :angry: THEN THEY STOP!!!!! :blink: like theirs a friggin' give way sign!!!! ......
.... -steam coming out of ears, red in the face-... i look forward to another week driving thru perth cbd :blink:

EYE CANDY !!!! :lol: :D

Jonchilds
25-06-2006, 09:49 PM
Pedestrian crossings shouldn't be implemented unless absolutely required, and not needed when the traffic on the road is sporadic or sparse at most times of the day.

The one between the Penninsula Tavern and the Maylands train station is a good example. Most of the time that I go down that street, I'm the only vehicle within 100m of myself, and in that situation people should be giving way to cars.

If there's alot of continuous traffic such as the one down Beaufort St, then a set of traffic lights controlling the intersection should be used.

What it really boils down to is a conflict between common sense, practicality, and peoples rights. A 1600kg lump of metal shouldn't need to stop for a 60-80kg person unless traffic is really dense. If you're the only car on the road at the time, they should be giving way to you.

thro
26-06-2006, 06:53 AM
IMO the thing that wont die should have right of way :P ie. if a car hits a person the person will die so it is the persons responsibility to keep themself out of the way of the car. its not ideal but it fits with human nature. how many times does a car pull out on you and you know if you were in a bus they wouldnt have done it? people are much better at protecting their own life than protecting other peoples.
[/b]

That *is* the general rule, however in high traffic areas where there's also a lot of pedestrian traffic, there's often good reasons for them.

Eg, shopping centres where there may be kids/people lugging heavy loads, etc - airports where people are going to be lugging heavy loads trying to catch their plane, etc.

In my mind, all a pedestrian crossing is, is a big sign saying "normal rules here don't apply here, pull your finger out and pay attention, and give way to people".

It's not like you have pedestrian crossings on the freeway - in every area i've seen them, it's been areas where you should be looking out for pedestrians and be ready to stop anyway... the pedestrian crossing is just there to make it enforceable by law...



The one between the Penninsula Tavern and the Maylands train station is a good example. Most of the time that I go down that street, I'm the only vehicle within 100m of myself, and in that situation people should be giving way to cars.
[/b]

I think you'll find in this case, it's because it's between a tavern and public transport.

There's likely to be pissed people staggering out of the tavern on their way home.

Should we:

a) make it safer for them to stagger to the train

or

B) encourage them to get in their car and drive home, to save themselves getting run over - and becoming a risk to everyone else?


Sure, if they're too pissed to see, it's not really your "problem" - but that doesn't make any difference when you hit some drunk on your bike, kill him, and go flying over the bars and break your neck yourself now, does it? :)

As to controlling this with traffic lights - that's a crap idea. Traffic lights suck balls - they stop the flow of traffic un-necessarily. If people simply treat the pedestrian crossing they way it should be treated, (i.e., keep going through it but be ready to stop in a hurry) there's no problem - and less disruption to traffic :D

Mr John
26-06-2006, 08:09 AM
Deal with it you freakin road nazis.

Pedestrians have right of way, pedestrians need to cross, vehicles need to respect the lives of the pedestrians and slow the fuck down.

You've got thousands of kms of open road to speed on, is it too much to ask that you dab the brakes every now an then in the interests of safety?

Really, what's the decelleration going to cost you? You might get home 4 seconds later and miss 1/2 a Rugs-A-Million advert.

Yes - pedestrians need to look out for their own safety and pay attention too
and Yes the person in command of the potentially deadly vehicle needs to pay attention.

Grow the fuck up.

Gryphen
26-06-2006, 09:16 AM
I've noticed that a lot of Zebra crossings no longer have all the cautionary road markings, it was once the practice that leading up to a Zebra crossing the road was covered in Zig-Zag markings and additioanl signage, but now you have crossings that are juast the stripes on the road and a couple of small signs either side.



Also the size of the speed signs is a LOT smaller here in the West, from experiences in the East, the speed signs are about twice the size, giving drivers a lot more notice of speed changes etc.



Travelling down the Kwinana freeway i noticed all the speed signs were only on one side of the road, so if you have a large vehicle along side you, theres no way you would see that the speed zone had changed.



It appears to me that they are trying to save money on all the signage, if Zebra crossings were more clearly marked then a driver/rider would have multiple inidcations that the crossing is ahead, and be able to take appropriate actions.



my 2c

MuNch
26-06-2006, 11:19 AM
There was a crossing attendant for my local highschool in about 1997 who was rundown by someone who did not see him. The solution after this was to put 2 crossing attendants on the road. I guess so it is easier to hit them and get more points on your score tally ? :confused:

chief wiggum
26-06-2006, 11:40 AM
The one between the Penninsula Tavern and the Maylands train station is a good example. Most of the time that I go down that street, I'm the only vehicle within 100m of myself, and in that situation people should be giving way to cars.
[/b]





I think you'll find in this case, it's because it's between a tavern and public transport.

There's likely to be pissed people staggering out of the tavern on their way home.
[/b]
more to the point, it's between the blind institute and public transport.
same affliction, just different reasons for it B)

Ev
26-06-2006, 11:45 AM
Around 1/3 of pedestrian accidents happen at "pedestrian crossings" supposedly safety zones many indicating no driver error, only false sense of security by pedestrian.
I propose it couldn't be much worse without many of these misguided "safety measures"

Another point to note is some people are too impaired and and will misjudge any crossing and endanger themselves.

Deal with it you freakin road nazis.

My view point is pedestrian I cross faster, safer and more conveniently without safety measures. Natural traffic flow I can deal with, crossings I generally find disconcerting.

Grow the fuck up.

Yes grow up then warning stop do not get any older or this could happen to you
example marmion ave whitfords shops underpass available old lady crossing slowly safely in distance in front of my car, randomly stops, and stands still not aware of anything round her it would seem she judged guessed the traffic correct but then what happened potential accident.
This person would fail at obtaining any license(even pedestrian if they had 1 for it) sad but true nothing you can do. Should we enforce having people like this protected from themselves? not really possible is it.

Elderley make up a large number of casualties, the above example shows that you cannot wrap everything in cotton wool people will always die from something, happens to every living thing somehow.

thro
26-06-2006, 12:35 PM
Around 1/3 of pedestrian accidents happen at "pedestrian crossings" supposedly safety zones many indicating no driver error, only false sense of security by pedestrian.
[/b]

Erm, given that you're supposed to give way to pedestrians, and be on the lookout for them, then how the hell can someone run one over and there be "no driver error" involved?

If you're not sure whether or not the person is going to walk out in front of you, you should be going slower.


Not saying that accidents don't happen - just that they don't magically happen without driver error...

People run red lights and stop signs too - unfortunately there's very little we can do about that other than prosecuting them - or building an overpass (which may not be viable due to cost).

If there is not appropriate signage, etc then that's a seperate issue - complain to the council and get them to label it properly...

Pkunk
26-06-2006, 01:25 PM
If you're not sure whether or not the person is going to walk out in front of you, you should be going slower.
Not saying that accidents don't happen - just that they don't magically happen without driver error...

[/b]

Ive nearly hit a pedestrian at a zebra crossing.

It was something like this, cruising at 60 in my car (or whatever the speed limit was in this particular area), normally ill have a look a see people "waiting to cross". So when i see that, ill stop, let them cross and be on my way.

But in this instance, yes a pedestrain did step out blindly onto the road. I am doing the limit. I then had to jump on the brakes and was abused by the pedestrain :/

Even tho they have right of way.... they have right of way ONLY WHEN SAFE TO DO SO !@!@

I also saw this on my lunch break -> pedestrains stepping out onto the road. They were nearly cleaned up by a 4wd. They said "we have right of way". I replied with something like "yeah, you have the right to step into an oncoming vehicle and get hit.... idiots"

:P