The Oregonian reported last week on a sad and solemn vigil held in Portland to commemorate the life, and untimely Oregon pedestrian truck accident death, of a 27-year old woman who lived in the city’s Hayhurst neighborhood.
The woman died earlier this month when she was struck by a truck as she crossed the road at the intersection of the Southwest Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway and Shattuck Road. According to the newspaper she was crossing at a marked crossing place and was doing so with the pedestrian walk signal. The Portland auto accident took place barely a week before Christmas. The vigil, reportedly attended by approximately 25 people, was held two days later.
Addressing the gathering Roger Averbeck of Southwest Neighborhoods Inc’s Transportation Committee said: “This was not an accident. It was a crash, and crashes are preventable,” according to The Oregonian. He called on local residents to advocate for safer, more pedestrian-friendly, streets. The paper goes on to note that in Southwest Portland: “many of the major arterials lack sidewalks, and some have very few places where pedestrians can safely cross. High speed vehicles make travel more dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists.”
The fact that this fatal Portland pedestrian accident took place at a marked crossing is also a reminder, however, that even when roads accommodate pedestrians, safety still begins with drivers themselves. As a Portland pedestrian accident lawyer I see too many cases of negligent and distracted driving, cases where tragedy could have been prevented if the person behind the wheel was simply acting in the responsible manner we should all demand of ourselves.
According to The Oregonian, police are still investigating the circumstances of the December 18 accident in Hayhurst. As a new year begins, however, this is a good moment to remind ourselves how important it is to slow down and exercise as drivers the caution we all appreciate as pedestrians.