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Jaywalking regulations tabled as Waynesboro solicitor researches liability

May 05, 2010|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- New regulations primarily designed to cut down on jaywalking in the Borough of Waynesboro were put on hold Wednesday as the borough council asked questions about legal liability.

Solicitor Melissa Dively said she'd have to further research whether the borough could be held responsible if a pedestrian was hit by a vehicle, both with the new ordinance in place and without it.

The borough council agreed April 21 it would advertise the ordinance with plans to adopt it Wednesday. However, the council members opted to table a decision until Dively could present them with more information.

"The purpose of the ordinance was to make downtown safer for pedestrians," Borough Engineer Kevin Grubbs said.

Grubbs attempted to clear up some concerns the council had regarding crossing the street at non-designated areas. He said the stipulation that pedestrians could only cross at crosswalks or intersections with traffic signals applies only to the Town Center and Downtown Business District zoning areas, and would only apply to certain blocks between intersections with traffic signals.

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"In this area, there are a lot of places you can legally cross," he said.

Under the new regulations being considered, Pedestrians could face fines up to $100 and citations for certain behaviors, such as turning from the sidewalk and hurriedly trying to cross the street without looking.

"Not only is it kids doing it, it's adults, too," Grubbs said.

Also, motorists could be cited for trying to go around a vehicle stopped for a pedestrian, he said.

"There is no jaywalking law in the state of Pennsylvania," Grubbs said.

The borough has had at least 50 pedestrian accidents since January 2004, according to published reports.

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