Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Pedestrian accidents should give walkers pause

To the editor:

I am saddened at the latest pedestrian accident on downtown Northampton’s streets. However, I am far from surprised. In fact, from my workday perspective looking down at the intersection by the Academy of Music, the only remarkable aspect is that this person was actually in the crosswalk when struck, and was therefore not at fault.

In short, I constantly see appalling stupidity displayed by pedestrians of all stripes: Parents with young children jaywalking across South Street to the Academy — at rush hour; coffee fanatics ignoring oncoming traffic to get to Dunkin’ Donuts; suited-up lawyers taking shortcuts to the courthouse; and far too many people not only jaywalking, but crossing and then proceeding to walk farther down the street to the crosswalk they could have used just as easily.

I’m trying not to simply broad-brush the modern American as too dumb for words. But please give me a bit of help and think before you wager your 100-pounds-plus of fragile flesh up against a 2,000-pound car or many-ton truck or bus.

Most downtown Northampton drivers will stop at crosswalks (though, of course, it still pays to keep your eyes open). So please, do everyone and especially yourself a favor, lessen the chaos and the probability of getting killed and use the crosswalks — carefully. Thanks.

Gerrit Stover


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