Q&A - Unsafe Walking to & From School

Q&A ImageWhile walking my 11 year old son to Van Horne Elementary this morning- yes I have to walk him because of the poor driving in my neighbourhood there was a dangerous situation at the corner of 43rd and Ontario St. My son and I were headed west on 43rd and had the right of way. We looked to ensure no cars were coming in any direction and step into the intersection.

Suddenly an SUV sped east on 43rd and almost hit my son. The driver then put up her hand to encourage us to continue crossing as if she was doing us a favour. The only part of her licence plate I saw were the first three numbers- 693. I will be looking for the end of the plate tomorrow morning.

I have spoken to the principal, several times and he has had enforcement in the area. I can honestly say that if such a situation happens again I will be fit to be tied and could likely be bonded by half the teachers, my  personal physician and other respected community members. I look forward to hearing back from you with any suggestions.

It is time for a intersection camera at 41st and Main where a red light doesn't mean much to a great percentage of the drivers.

Here's the intersection in Vancouver that this lady is speaking of:


Aside from the fact that it is a "T" intersection, it really doesn't look different from any residential street intersection in an urban area.

From the description, the vehicle being complained about was traveling on Ontario Street and turned onto 43rd Avenue. I'm unable to tell from the description if the people were crossing 43rd or Ontario when the event occurred.

My first thought is that there is no difficulty seeing in any direction along these streets. How did this vehicle suddenly appear?

There is also mention of right of way in the question. While a pedestrian may have privileges under the Motor Vehicle Act, in this case vehicular traffic stopping to allow a pedestrian to cross at the intersection, it is decidedly unsafe to insist on this and walk into the path of an approaching vehicle expecting the driver to stop.

How would a red light camera at 41st Avenue and Main Street help this situation?

In reply to by DriveSmartBC

I'm still trying to figure out exactly where the pedestrians were, myself.

Can't help but note the excellent marked crosswalk with pedestrian bulges at 42nd to get across Ontario, leads straight to the school's main entrance.

Other road conditions around that school are typical of the City of Vancouver, they're pretty thorough with the 30 km/h School Zone clearly marked and in effect, along with speed humps to slow traffic down 24/7.  And the school area itself is well fenced to contain the kidlets at recess.

The engineers would seem to have decided not to mark crosswalks at 43rd & Ontario, though technically they exist as connectors to the sidewalks, but that's usually because they can lead pedestrians into a presumption of safety and/or right-of-way that could be detrimental to their health.