Being Good Neighbors: Cross Walks
Dear fellow runners, for twelve weeks we’ll be touching on safety related topics including Complete Streets, Vision Zero, running etiquette, problem intersections, rights and responsibilities of crosswalks, Sharing the Road, visibility, being an Ambassador, what to do if there’s an accident, and underlying them all are the laws and enforcement. Our goal is one of education: to continue making East Nashville a great place to live and to run.
We live In a car dominated city where more than half of the people commute from surrounding counties and many of these drivers may not be aware of laws protecting pedestrians in their rushed day. For example, in other more pedestrian oriented cities, cars immediately yield to peds entering the crosswalks. Not so much in Nashville. But the law states that when a pedestrian enters a marked crosswalk, the car must yield if at all possible. This is an important law that is unknown even to many pedestrians.
Now, “if at all possible” is a gray and dangerous line, and no one wants to get hurt teaching a lesson. But if we, as pedestrians, don’t assert our rights in the crosswalks, we continue the cycle of cars neither understanding the laws nor respecting us as valid users of the streets. Likewise, it is important that when we are driving, we respect pedestrians as well! Be patient and show others the respect that we presume.
East Nashville is the most walkable residential neighborhood in the city, so let’s continue making it better. Educate your friends about crosswalks, and cautiously assert your rights as a pedestrian. Be safe: don’t assume the cars will obey the law, and remember they must be able to yield. Call the police about close calls (862-8600), and report even the smallest accidents. Call your city councilperson if crosswalks are not being obeyed, and see if they can get more signage. The law is on our side.
Route #12: The Nasty
6am and/or 6pm at 11th & Holly. This is our signature run. The other 11 routes have been leading up to this one. Finish this run, and you become a card-carrying member of East Nasty, (I guess “bumper-sticker carrying member” would be more accurate.)
If you are a last nasty, check the Facebook page, because they will probably leave about 5:30 rather than 5:45 this week.