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Pedestrians not always acting in their own best interest

I’m pretty sure I’ve said this before, but how can it be the end of another month already?

The funny thing is that early on in COVID-19, when we were in something closer to a full lockdown, each day seemed to drag by. Now, for some reason, it seems like things are moving faster.

One thing that wasn’t moving faster was a couple of pedestrians I saw this week. They were chatting at the side of the street, which normally wouldn’t be a bad thing.

Except they were standing right at the edge of a crosswalk at an intersection, so I had no idea whether one or both of them were suddenly going to remember they were supposed to be on the other side of the street and then dart out into the crosswalk in front of me.

The good news, from my point of view, was that I was coming up to a stop sign, so I stopped and watched them to make sure there was no sudden movement, then proceeded to make my turn.

It reminded me of a couple of other pedestrians I had seen earlier in the week in separate incidents. One of them did the same things I have seen a number of other times at the pedestrian-controlled crosswalk by the post office on 15th Avenue.

He pushed the button to indicate he wanted to cross, then noticed a break in the traffic and ran across.

Of course, the lights didn’t know he had already crossed, and they, as programmed, changed to red on 15th Avenue, blocking traffic in both directions while nobody crossed the street.

On the flip side of that, I saw somebody hustling to get into the crosswalk at a different intersection with the pedestrian light already flashing red. I anticipated they would hustle across the street, knowing the light could change fairly soon.

Nope, they apparently figured that as long as they were in the crosswalk before the light turned red, they could amble across, which meant they crossed the last couple of lanes when the traffic there already had a green light.

I couldn’t help thinking about what would happen if there was a large truck in the inside lane and a car came up beside it in the outside lane and saw the green light.

I don’t know what the legal ruling would be, but I do know the pedestrian would come out worse in the collision.

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