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Proposed rules would place more responsibility on pedestrians in Waynesboro

April 09, 2010|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, PA. -- New regulations being considered in Waynesboro would place increased responsibility on pedestrians to prevent pedestrian accidents.

The borough has had at least 50 pedestrian accidents since January 2004, according to published reports. Police responded to one, without reported injuries, Tuesday.

"We've got a lot of pedestrian accidents in the borough," Police Chief Mark King said. "There is no rhyme or reason."

King worked with Borough Engineer Kevin Grubbs in reviewing a sample ordinance provided in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Local Technical Assistance Programs (LTAPs).

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If adopted, the ordinance would give Waynesboro police the authority to enforce parts of the state vehicle code they couldn't previously, King and Grubbs said.

Pedestrians could face fines up to $100 or citations for certain behaviors, such as turning from the sidewalk and hurriedly trying to cross the street without looking. Another violation would be exiting the driver's side of a parked vehicle and walking into the street without using a crosswalk.

"It helps to put a little more responsibility, in certain areas, on the pedestrian," King said.

"This ordinance basically forces you to use the crosswalk that's in place, including the mid-block ones. It's there for the protection of pedestrians as well as the motorists," Grubbs said.

The Waynesboro Borough Council received a draft copy of the ordinance at its meeting Wednesday. The council members will review the ordinance for a few weeks before deciding whether it's something they want to adopt.

The first page of the ordinance says it maintains the "general rule" that "the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection." It also states that "no pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle, which is so close as to constitute a hazard."

The ordinance later states that pedestrians crossing a roadway at any point other than a crosswalk or intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles. They are completely prohibited from crossing at non-designated areas in the Town Center district.

Also prohibited would be crossing an intersection diagonally unless authorized by police, fire police or a crossing guard.

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