Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Letter of the Day

Crosswalk system 'archaic'

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Your Aug. 3 editorial Review crosswalks is gratifying to read. I have long wondered about the design of these odd corridors of danger to pedestrians and nearly camouflaged areas for drivers.

Why yellow? What's wrong with red? A blinking yellow light above the road, a light that does not conform to any other "Hey you! Stop now!" signal is counter-intuitive and dangerous. Make them red.

Paul Sweatman

Winnipeg

 

The article 30 days for deadly inattention (Aug. 2) highlights another example of the toll taken by the most poorly thought out and deadliest feature of our traffic system -- the pedestrian crosswalk. These might have worked safely in the horse-and buggy era, but with traffic flowing at 60 km/h they are tragedies waiting to happen.

I have personally had a number of close calls at these crosswalks over the years (for the pedestrian, not myself as the driver), because a lot of people seem to think a car can stop on a dime and just push the button and step off the curb.

These crosswalks put the judgment of the car's speed and ability to stop in the hands of the pedestrian, not the driver. They should immediately be replaced with normal traffic lights. With a yellow-red sequence for the driver before the pedestrian gets the OK to start walking, few tragedies such as the death of Joanna Storm would again occur.

Jarrett Carleton had a good driving record and almost certainly would have stopped for a red light. The maintenance of this archaic traffic-control system has left a young woman dead and a young man to bear for the rest of his life the guilt of having killed an innocent person. The cost would be minimal in comparison; the change should start now.

GLENN LENNOX

Winnipeg

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 4, 2012 A15

History

Updated on Tuesday, August 7, 2012 at 2:48 PM CDT: adds links

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