HRM to review pedestrian safety at Dartmouth crosswalk
Pedestrian Alan Carpenter died after being hit by motorist
The crash that killed a pedestrian in a Dartmouth crosswalk will be reviewed by the Halifax Regional Municipality to see if pedestrian safety needs to be improved.
Allen Carpenter,68, was fatally hit while walking across the street at the corner of Albro Lake Road and Victoria Road Sunday night and died Monday.
Allen Carpenter's son Kaven Carpenter says he believes the crash that killed his father was an accident.
"It was an accident, it could happen to anybody," he told CBC News. "As sad as it is for me, I feel bad for the guy, he's going to be in misery for the rest of his life for what he did."
Carpenter's family does have questions for the review, such as why pedestrians can't fully cross the intersection before the traffic hand starts flashing.
The review will look into whether pedestrians need more time to cross safely, said Taso Koutroulakis, who works in Traffic and Right-of-Way Services for the city.
If you're in the crosswalk and the hand begins to flash, keep going, Koutroulakis says.
"The flashing hand is called the clearing interval, if you're in the crosswalk when that hand comes up, you should have sufficient time to cross the street safely," he said.
However, if the hand comes before you have started across the street, wait.
Changes to crosswalks
His department is reviewing the accident, and may decide to leave the crossing sign up longer to give pedestrians a few more seconds to cross the street.
Koutroulakis says he's not sure any of length of time with the cross symbol would've saved Carpenter's life.
That intersection has the most restrictive type of control possible, meaning a full range of traffic signals for pedestrians and drivers.
"We'd have to look at it, but at this point, I can't think of any obvious options to consider, but we will look at it again once we receive additional information from the police."
Crosswalk line widths are increasing this summer from 15 centimetres to 20 centimetres, to help direct pedestrians where to cross safely.
But, that won't help motorists necessarily yield to crosswalks because it's not generally in their line of vision, Koutroulakis says.
Following a number of crossing fatalities several years ago, a crosswalk safety task force was formed between the province and Halifax Regional Municipality.
One of the findings implemented was to increase the diameter of the amber lights to make them easier to see.
Whatever the review's outcome, Tammy Carpenter, Kaven Carpenter's wife, says accidents happen.
"Whether or not that light was there or, the man didn't see him, he wouldn't have seen him whether there was a walk sign or not," she said.