Israel: Most Struck Pedestrian Accidents Occur in Crosswalks

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ichudRoad safety officials continue efforts to reduce the number of people killed and injured on the nation’s roads. One of the commonly heard messages is directed at pedestrians, not motorists – to cross at authorized crosswalks only and not in the middle of a street.

Sadly, despite the fact crosswalks are prominently marked throughout Israel, 60% of pedestrians struck by a motorized vehicle are hit in an authorized crosswalk. A new advert being run by the Ohr Yarok NGO seeks to heighten pedestrian awareness, calling on pedestrians to get rid of the “false feeling of confidence” we have when crossing in an authorized crosswalk and to stop for a moment and evaluate the situation. In short, while one may have the right of way one should do what one can to avoid being struck.

Ohr Yarok reports that in the past decade, 32,273 pedestrians were injured and 1,345 killed, referring to 2003-2013. The report adds that since the beginning of 2013, 67 pedestrians were killed in Israel. One in every four pedestrians is struck while jaywalking. One of every five pedestrians killed is hit in an authorized crosswalk. 47% of the total number of pedestrians killed was hit crossing illegally.

In 75% of the struck pedestrian cases, motorists fail to give pedestrians the right of way.

The law compels a driver to slow down as s/he approaches a crosswalk and to yield the right of way to pedestrians. Failure to do so may result in a 500 NIS fine, a summons to appear in court and 10 points.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

3 COMMENTS

  1. I hold my heart in my hands every morning. My kids school is very close to my house by they have a very busy crosswalk to cross. So being that i know road rules; driving around often. I taught my kids what the driver thinks and how he perceives the crosswalk. This makes the situation calmer. Most of the accidents happen because children or people assume that the crosswalk no matter at what point they arrive to it is theirs. And israeli law states that it’s zechut kadima. If a car arrives before the person arrived to the crosswalk he doesn’t need to stop. So the car needs to slow down if pple are approaching it and see who will be first. On the other hand because pple think (since they dont know the rules of the road) that they come first: pedestrians firt. They can sometimes suddenly begin running quickly. Or not start their crosssing exactly from the crosswalk and the driver gets confused or just doesn;t see. And then of course since the israeli govt wants to save money they have crosswalks all over without lights and unfortunately the police are busier handing out tickets in places they could just make money off. They don’t stand on top of the most important parts of road rules such as pedestrian crossings , especially when they don’t have the electrical traffic lights for pedestrians and cars. Too many accidents. I wonder where my arnona goes to.

  2. Why isn’t the ad directed towards the drivers that couldn’t manage to steer a matchbox car? Sounds like BP or Williamsburg where the driving is equally as bad if not worse.

  3. It is always nice when road traffic authorities get the opportunity to lay blame on pedestrians too me this seems rediculas.
    It is common place to see motor cyclist driving on the footpaths spurred on by the local council traffic cops who are very guilty of this too when they are not speaking on their mobiles whist riding on their motorcycles.
    Of course HATZOLAH play a huge part in ensuring pedestrian safety especially when their members freely park on the sidewalks when they need to go shopping and can not find a parking spot close enough to the shops forcing pedestrians to walk on the roads and around the cars.
    and lets not forget the role played by our esteemed elected members of the kenesset and local councilmen who employ drivers to drive around the city throwing stickers and other things out the car window for kids who invariably run after the cars on the roads in hope of receiving more.