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Mountain View on the Move

MV Police urge caution in wake of fatal collision

A March 4 traffic fatality and another injury accident Feb. 26 have Mountain View police on alert and reminding motorists that officers are on the lookout for unsafe drivers.

According to police, a woman believed to be crossing Phyllis Avenue near Hans Avenue was struck and killed by a vehicle.

Police said the pedestrian, whose identity was not revealed last week, suffered major injuries and was transported to Stanford Hospital, where she later died. The adult female driver of the vehicle – a blue 2000 Nissan Maxima – remained at the scene and cooperated with police. Both parties are residents of Mountain View.

“Alcohol and speed are not believed to be factors in this collision,” said police spokesman Jaime Garrett.

The Mountain View Police Department is investigating the collision to determine a cause. Officers seek the public’s assistance and ask that anyone who may have witnessed the collision call the department at 903-6344.

In addition, a vehicle struck a 17-year-old male pedestrian from San Jose as he crossed South Shoreline Boulevard in Mountain View in the crosswalk Feb. 26. The teen suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was transported to a local hospital.

A preliminary investigation revealed that the driver was at fault for failure to yield to a pedestrian in the crosswalk. The driver of the vehicle was not believed to be under the influence of alcohol, and excessive speed was not an issue.

In response to these incidents and a rash of others, police have conducted pedestrian decoy operations around the city in an attempt to cut down on motorists failing to stop for pedestrians at crosswalks and intersections.

“Under California law, motorists are required to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians in a crosswalk, but many roll right through them, creating a dangerous situation,” said police spokesman Sean Thompson.

Pedestrian safety is a serious issue, said department officials. According to the California Drivers Handbook:

• In California, pedestrian deaths occur in approximately 19 percent of all traffic fatalities. Drive cautiously when pedestrians are near because they may suddenly cross your path.

• Pedestrians may be at risk walking near hybrid and electric vehicles because these vehicles are virtually silent while operating. Use extra caution when driving near pedestrians.

• Respect the right-of-way of pedestrians. Always stop for any pedestrian crossing at corners or other crosswalks, even if the crosswalk is in the middle of the block, at corners with or without traffic lights, whether or not painted lines mark the crosswalks.

• Do not pass a vehicle that has stopped at a crosswalk. A pedestrian you cannot see may be crossing the street. Stop, then proceed when all pedestrians have crossed the street.

• Remember, if a pedestrian makes eye contact with you, he or she is ready to cross the street. Yield to the pedestrian.

• Allow older pedestrians, disabled pedestrians and pedestrians with young children sufficient time to cross the street.

• A crosswalk is the part of the roadway set aside for pedestrian traffic. Most intersections have a pedestrian crosswalk whether or not lines are painted on the street. Most crosswalks are located at corners, but they can also be located in the middle of the block. Before turning a corner, watch for people about to cross the street. Pedestrians have the right-of-way in marked or unmarked crosswalks.

• Crosswalks are often marked with white lines. Yellow crosswalk lines may be painted at school crossings. Most often, crosswalks in residential areas are not marked.

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/mountainviewpolicedepartment.

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