Almost three months after the accident on Foster Road in which two women, Jessica Finlay, 28, and Lindsay Leonard, 23, were hit by a car while crossing the street, Jessica Finlay has died. She had been in a coma since the accident on November 1, 2009. Lindsay Leonard died in the crash.
Our hearts go out to Finlay’s family and friends. We were very much affected when we first read about the accident – as were many others in Portland. A vigil was held and Mayor Sam Adams vowed to increase pedestrian safety. We hope, for the sake of all those who have been injured since this accident and who, we’re sure, will be injured still, that he will.
Pedestrians are amazingly vulnerable on the streets, and no one seems to be taking care to watch for them. Around the holidays in December alone, there were at least three accidents in which pedestrians were injured or killed. And so many of them happen in crosswalks, where they are supposed to be protected. But impatient, distracted, or careless drivers ignore the laws and the well-being and safety of others.
One Oregon law specifically states that a driver cannot pass another car at a crosswalk. And of course, there’s the very general yet very clear law that states that a driver must stop and stay stopped for a pedestrian.
Many of these accidents happen when it’s dark out too. So don’t wear dark clothing. And drivers be more vigilant than ever.
Please, everyone, be careful out there. And pedestrians especially, all the responsibility shouldn’t be on you, but we seriously ask that you protect yourself and watch for cars, because despite their responsibility and duties as a motorist, they are probably not looking out for you.