Lack of crosswalks potential threat

Lack of crosswalks potential threat

City of Cheney investigates installing crosswalks on Betz.

A $90,000 grant will be used to put in three crosswalks around Eagle Point Apartments, according to Cheney public works director Todd Ablemen.

“By any means, we haven’t ignored this [situation],” said Ableman.

According to Ableman, depending on when the grant money kicks in, this project will be completed either next year or in 2015.

The crosswalks will not just be lines across the road, though.

According to Ableman, because these crosswalks will not be in an intersection, they will need lights to catch the attention of drivers. Otherwise drivers will just drive through.

For now, Ableman suggests that people who catch the bus on Betz Road at Eagle Point heading towards EWU catch the bus at the Mike Mckeehan Way bus stop. Though it is a further walk, Ableman said it is safer.

For those who do cross on Betz Road, the fact that there is no crosswalk can make catching the bus a challenging and alarming experience.

“It’s kind of scary,” said Cori Olson, a senior at EWU. “You walk from behind the bus and there are cars coming right at you. Most of the time, they don’t even stop to let you cross.”

She also does not like when, in the morning, she gets stuck waiting to cross the street to catch the bus.

”Some mornings it’s hard [to cross the street] because you can’t get across with all the cars coming, and other mornings when it’s really dead or foggy it’s really hard to see the cars coming,” said junior Rebecca Spurgeon.

Spurgeon said that the best place to put a crosswalk would be at the middle school.

The dangers of crossing an unmarked crosswalk became clear when a family of three were hit by a car in Spokane on Oct. 18.

According to the article, “Police: Family not in crosswalk at time of deadly accident,” by KXLY reporter Aaron Luna, the mother was walking her son and daughter across a street when the three were struck by a car.

All three were rushed to the hospital. Unfortunately, only the mother and son survived.

Though the mother tested positive for having meth in her system at the time and is being investigated for second-degree manslaughter, the danger of crossing an unmarked road is still there.

According to http://WSDOT.wa.gov, anyone crossing an unmarked road must yield to oncoming traffic. Also, drivers must stop and remain stopped when a pedestrian is crossing the street, even if the crosswalk is unmarked.