Sunday, January 29, 2012

This Week on Foot

The end of January is turning out to be just as busy as the beginning. First, there's the ongoing controversy about Distracted pedestrians? Accidents on rise for headphone-wearers. Of course, some (ahem, Streetsblog) have a message to those who blame the pedestrians for this phenomenon: Dear Media Lemmings: Headphones Don’t Kill People, Drivers Do. And they're more likely to do it if they're distracted, which is why Streetsblog also suggests we Dislike? Mercedes-Benz Wants to Put Facebook in Your Dashboard.

With all this distraction, it's not surprise that Bike-Ped Traffic, Funding, and Fatalities All Inch Upward, or that one Mother of 3 kids hit in crosswalk wants tougher texting laws. Don't we all? Well, maybe not in Virginia, where a Bill to see drivers to exercise due care defeated in VA House subcommittee . And then, even the Santa Barbara City Council split over curb extensions at dangerous intersection, so I guess things that seem obvious to those of us in the pedestrian advocacy world (like how when you're talking about Traffic in LA.: Most Vulnerable Angelinos at Risk) aren't so straightforward elsewhere.

It's a little shaky outside the U.S. also, like in Chennai, India where Pedestrians find themselves on edge in or in Jakarta where Pedestrian safety yet to see improvement. At least in New Delhi they've figured out that Pedestrians prefer jaywalking to using bridges, PWD to investigate .

But lest you get too depressed about the state of the pedestrian world, remember that L.A. County takes step to promote exercise, reduce obesity while a Council Considers Warning Surfaces For Pedestrian Plazas in New York, Cranford police get $6,000 federal grant for pedestrian safety in New Jersey, and Students' Dream for Seven Springs Middle Sidewalks About to Materialize. At least in some places Pedestrian safety a city priority, Wisconsin Rapids officials say--though maybe not in upstate New York, where Syracuse lawmakers reject new way to enforce sidewalk shoveling. Well, you can't win them all.

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