The four most dangerous pedestrian intersections on campus
Every campus has them - the places where high traffic counts and high pedestrian counts meet. It is at these areas of focused pedestrian/vehicle interaction that we as a campus must be extra careful. For drivers, that means understanding areas where extra caution and slow speeds are needed. For pedestrians, it means remembering that the option to enter any intersection lies entirely within your own power - and not to put yourself at risk until you have ensured your own safety.
With that said, let's take a look at these four traffic hotspots, compiled with assistance from the University Police Department and the Office of Environmental Health and Safety:
- The intersection of Bill McDonald and West College Way next to the Wade King Student Recreation Center. This one is tops on the list because of its high usage, combined with turning buses and a pair of crosswalks from each parking lot that cross West College. Of all the intersections on this list, it's the one with the most variables for motorists and the highest need to be truly watchful as a pedestrian.
- The intersection of South College Drive and East College Way. Just downhill towards Fairhaven from the first intersection listed. Thankfully, buses are not as big an influence on cars and pedestrians at this intersection, but it still gets high counts of both traffic and pedestrians making their way to the flag plaza and south campus beyond.
- Crossing Garden Street to get to the VU or Mathes. Cars often driving too fast and pedestrians who emerge between parked cars can be a bad combination on this street. Make sure to use the crosswalks and look both ways when walking there.
- High Street at the VU, and downhill at the gate by Nash. Thankfully the WTA bus drivers are diligent to always try to give pedestrians the time to cross in this super busy area, but the bicyclists and skateboarders that often come roaring down this hill don't have as much of an ability to stop or swerve, especially where the gate squeezes all traffic into one lane.
Phones remain one of the chief culprits in many preventable accidents. If you are driving, wait to answer that text until you park. If you are walking and hit one of these intersections, please put your phone down and make an informed choice about whether or not it is safe to cross, and that you are doing so legally.
Stay safe, Viks!