Precautions for Pedestrians by Maricruz Bautista

The following student essay was submitted as an entry in our scholarship essay contest.

Precautions for Pedestrians

By Maricruz Bautista

From Hillsborough Community College

Cars were everywhere, flying by so fast that they shook my poor car while I waited for the stop light to turn green.  But I took no notice of it, what I had caught my eye was the fact that there was a teenage boy trying to cross the street while the traffic light was green. From the place I was I could see the  pedestrian signals, but the young man took no notice of it and start to cross the street while the cars showed no signs of slowly down. There were cars everywhere, but he just keep walking on without waiting for the traffic lights to turn red or for the pedestrian sign to turn to walk. I don’t know how but that boy was lucky that day because right before he could step onto the sidewalk a black sedan came straight for him, I thought that he was going to be run over. But at the last minute the black sedan changed lanes almost hitting another car. But thankfully no accidents occurred. From then on I continue to observe people that were crossing the streets and I realizes that not many of them use the pedestrian signals instead they watch the traffic lights to turn red. And many of them crossed the middle of the streets or in between cars.

Frist and foremost before crossing a street pedestrians should always check if there are pedestrian signals, if there is they need to use it. They need to watch the pedestrian signals and not the traffic lights because some cars will turn right on red lights.  Second the pedestrian must check both sides of the road to cross when the pedestrian signals to walk. They must make sure to make eye contact with the waiting cars or incoming cars to make sure that the driver has seen and acknowledge their presence because many drivers look down at their phones and do not pay attention to the crosswalks. Pedestrians must hold securely on children when crossing the streets with them because some kids get really excited and run away from the security of their parents. If there are no pedestrian signals, or crosswalks the pedestrians must make sure that the traffic is light and slow if not they must wait for the traffic to become so. Many pedestrian become impatient and don’t wait, they take the first opportunity and run across the road while traffic is still heavy and fast (These pedestrians increase their risk of being run over). And again before crossing the street they must change both sides before crossing the street and make eye contact with drivers. If the incoming traffic shows no sign of stopping or slowly down, the pedestrian must wait until the traffic slows or stops completely if they have no other choice. If are other cross walks ahead or a slow in traffic the pedestrian can continue ahead until they reach it and then cross the street.

According to U.S department of transportation pedestrian fatalities have declined between 1997 and 2006, and that two-thirds of pedestrian fatalities occur in urban areas. Nationwide, nearly two pedestrians died in vehicle crashes per 100,000 population, and a pedestrian crash death occurred every 70 million miles walked. One interesting fact found is that most fatalities occur on either January 1 or October 31, and that males have a much higher probability than females to be killed in a crash.

In doing this essay I have learn a lot such as the above and I want to take this opportunity to thank you for that and for the chance at furthering my education. Thank you.