When an accident involves a car and pedestrian, it is the pedestrian that faces the most risk every single time, which means the law needs to recognize this vulnerable group. Connecticut has many laws that help safeguard against pedestrian accidents, but they are not working.
The CT Post explains that from 2017 to 2018, there was a 20% increase in the deaths of pedestrians. A new bill hopes to introduce changes that put control of the streets into the hands of the citizens that live on them.
Common causes of such accidents include speeding, lack of crosswalk signals, distracted driving and not enough law enforcement presence. The new bill proposes that people within the community should have a say in speed limits set on local roads. It advocates for higher fines for cell phone use violations by drivers. In addition, it aims for changes in the crosswalk laws, requiring pedestrians to physically signal to vehicles as they enter the roadway instead of blindly trusting it is a safe zone.
The bill has an uphill battle as the Senate left two other pedestrian safety bills to die out in 2019. Opposition to the bill may come in the form of those who feel many pedestrian accidents happen due to the actions of pedestrians, specifically, not making themselves visible at night.
The good news is that all the proposals in the bill come without a cost to the state as it simply aims to refine existing laws and give more power to pedestrians to prevent accidents and protect themselves.