Four pedestrians hit in two days on Utah roads, what you can do to stay safe

Oct 18, 2023, 11:54 AM

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TAYLORSVILLE — This week, a disturbing number of auto-pedestrian crashes have happened on Utah roads.

Over the last two days, four people have been hit by a car on Utah roads.

According to Jason Mettmann with The Department of Public Safety, Highway Safety Office, in 2023, 26 pedestrians have been killed on Utah roads.

“The car is going to win every time,” Mettmann said.

Of those 26 lives lost, he said about 1 in 5 of those were kids under 12 years old.

Even when the signals are active in crosswalks, there are some kids who are getting hit.

“The kids don’t have the depth perception like a driver does. They’re not trained well enough and practiced well enough to judge that distance…” Mettmann said.

Mettmann said the most common factor among drivers in these pedestrian related crashes is failure to yield. 

“…That those drivers are not obeying those signs and signals. That they’re distracted. That they’re not stopping in enough time to give those pedestrians enough time to cross the street safely,” Mettmann said.

On Tuesday night, a teen was hit by a car in Kaysville, near 550 E 300 South, not far from Davis High.

Kaysville police said crews found an unresponsive 17-year-old boy in the road.

Airlifted to the University of Utah Trauma Center, police said that teen was in critical but stable condition and is now suffering from severe head injuries. 

Witnesses reported he ran suddenly into the roadway, which was not a designated crossing area.

“We’re really concerned about the statistics of this and how they are heavily growing. We want everyone to be safe,” Officer Alexis Benson, Kaysville Police Public Information Officer, said. 

As Halloween approaches along with Daylight Saving Time: staying visible is a way to help you stay safe. 

“Put on a bright colored helmet. Use reflective gear. Even consider putting on a light on the bicycle and also on the helmet. Maybe a flashing light on their backpack as they’re using those crosswalks,”  Mettmann said.

Mettmann said there are two different types of crosswalks that drivers should be aware of:

If it is a school zone, the lights are on, and there is someone walking in the crosswalk, drivers need to stop completely and wait as they cross the entire street.

In parallel crosswalks that are not in school zones, if the lights are on and someone is trying to cross, drivers need to yield while they are on the driver’s side of the street. Once they cross over, the driver is good to keep driving as long as it is safe to do so. 

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Four pedestrians hit in two days on Utah roads, what you can do to stay safe