Friday, March 14, 2008

Bus Kills Pedestrian at Main & Hastings

A "Top Class Limousine" tour bus was at the bottom of it's class tonight when it had a pedestrian under it's wheel. The 68 year old pedestrian was struck by the bus shortly before 9 p.m. as it turned north off Hastings onto Main St., by the Pathways Job Search Center. A witness who passed by shortly after the accident, said, "They had to take him out from under the wheel." (The pedestrian can be seen lying under a white sheet at the left of the photo above.)

The bus appeared empty of passengers.

At least one security guard came to help from the Carnegie Community Center across the street. The pedestrian still had a pulse but as a police officer entering the Carnegie Center said, "It doesn't look good." He died shortly afterwards at the scene. He did not die enroute to hospital as CTV television reported. He was put into a wine colored body bag at the scene and loaded into the coroner's van.

A bearded VPD Constable wearing a turban (on right of photo above) stood behind the yellow tape across the street from the accident to make sure nobody violated that boundry. But his skills as a community-friendly cop were less than stellar; he was defensive and snooty when a local resident politely asked him if he could walk on the Main Street sidewalk to get home. That same Constable was standing by the yellow tape at the Cambie Hotel on February 15th, the night Steve Seymour was shot to death.


Anonymous said...

The way the typical fuckwad Vancouverite crosses the road, it's amazing this doesn't happen daily.

HELLO NIMROD PEDESTRIANS!!!! Look both ways and don't challenge vehicles, you will eventually loose.

Anonymous said...

There is certainly a dangerous problem with the interaction between pedestrians and vehicles in the DTES. Vehicles are often in the wrong, with vainglorious jerks from outside the area come to score and show off, but it's more complex than that.

I've waited on a corner at Main and Hastings with a woman attempting to cross against the light in the pouring rain, trying to convince her of the laws about bodies in motion tending to stay that way, especially in the pouring rain when their brakes don't work as well, and then there's also the problem of poor visability, but since she's never driven, she doesn't get that in a real physical way. Couple her lack of driving experience with her own subconscious death wish and the drugs she's on.....the situation gets dangerously devil may care.

And on the drivers side, unless they drive downtown a lot, they are unaware of the unpredictability of the populace. They don't understand that unlike the rest of the streets of the world, people will suddenly tweak across the street, or be totally defiant towards the tons of steel hurtling at them out of class hatred.

The large bus companies could use some education for their drivers for this hazard. It is probably an unrecognized problem by them. I notice that the last accidental traffic death involved a gigantic commercial vehicle passing through the area. These drivers probably don't go through the area much and are completely unaware of the unpredictability of the pedestrians there.

Anonymous said...

In response to the above comment, one has to point out that in terms of the law, the drivers aren't really violating it though they can be advised to drive "defensively". However, the pedestrians are violating the law in not crossing at appropriate areas or at correct times. Perhaps fencing could be set up to prevent those pedestrians from jay walking. As well, signs can be posted warning drivers of illegal crossings.

Anonymous said...

I was puzzled by the tone of your first sentence in your comment till I realized that perhaps you thought that my comment: "or be totally defiant towards the tons of steel hurtling at them out of class hatred." could have been construed as thinking that the "tons of steel" were motivated by class hatred. I meant the defiance of the pedestrians towards the cars, but I guess there are cases of the other way around too.

Anonymous said...

I work in the DTES and there is nothing more frustrating than drugged out people crossing the road with out thinking of what could happen. The funny thing is some of them actually don't care, and I thats not just my opinion either I've actually warned people about walking against a traffic light and their response has been, "If I get hit and die I'll be happy". How can you expect education of drivers to help? That's the simplest answer to give and also the dumbest. The only thing that will help is experience driving in a neighbourhood with tweekers and junkies who routinely display an ignorance to the laws of the road and ultimately cause their own deaths.

Dag said...

I see the reckless and suicidal behaviour of too many as well, and though I feel the ordinary compassion most do, I must feel more compassion for those who have to live with the trauma of having killed someone, however unintentionally, those who, through no fault of their own, end someone's life in the course of what should be an ordinary experience of driving in a city. But really, what are we to do? We could assign boy scouts to every lunatic and junkie in the city to help them cross the streets, provide education programmes for drivers going through the area, set a policeman at every street corner, put up fences, monitor the whole area with video cameras and even hovering helicopters; or we can just shrug and expect that if people have less sense than deer in heat, they have to go the hard way; and those who give them the shove the suicidal seem to want will have to live too with the hardship of nature as it is in the world of reality rather than some dystopian nightmare of complete safety in complete control of every walking person crossing a street.

Sympathy? It's good to a point, but beyond that it becomes a mental illness. Argue with a moving bus, no sympathy from me. Kill a person diving into an on-going vehicle? Well, get on and get over it. Life is tough, and it kills everyone eventually. Live while you can, maybe do a bit of good, do as little harm as possible for the average person in a difficult reality, call it a success. Then say good-bye with a smile.

Anonymous said...

I have lived in the D.E. for the last 30 something years. To my knowledge almost all the accidents in the Gore to Abbott Streets along Hastings were pedestrian faulted. This included a mother and adult daughter hit by a police car crossing the middle of the block at 25 E. Hastings back in 1986. The Dodson Hotel. The police car had lights and siren on. I also jay-walk but try to use common sense. At 1:20 in the morning some 4 hours later the police tape and investigation was still on going.

wilfr said...

An interesting discussion going on here. I am a frequent pedestrian, cyclist and driver in the dtes - live here too - and was interested to chime in, but thought I'd like to have a bit more knowledge before doing so. This prompted me to do some googling about pedestrian-related deaths and injuries, and I came up with ICBC's stats, the latest of which are from 2005 for all of BC. I don't have time to get further in at this point, but thought I would leave the link for others' interested. Here's a summary for 2005, and the link to the ICBC site follows.

Pedestrians in 2005 Collisions

There were 1,825 reported traffic collisions that involved
pedestrians in 2005. There were 1,987 persons (including
occupants of motor vehicles) injured or killed in collisions
involving pedestrians, with pedestrians accounting for 96.9% of
the casualties.
There were 1,857 pedestrians reported injured in traffic
collisions during 2005, 6.8% more than in 2004 (1,738). The
number of pedestrians killed was 68, 5 fewer than the number
killed in 2004.
Older persons appear to be at particular risk of death as
pedestrians. Of the 68 pedestrians killed, 35 (51.5%) were over
the age of 50, 8 (11.8%) were between 21 and 30 and 1 (1.5%)
was aged under 16. Of the 1,857 injured, 330 (17.8%) were
aged 61 and over, 300 (16.2%) were between 21 and 30 and 228
(12.3%) were under age 16.
Of all pedestrian collisions in 2005, approximately 51.5%
occurred at intersections. Over half (53.8%) of all fatal
pedestrian collisions occurred at non-intersection locations. Of
these fatal collisions, 45.7% of the pedestrians were crossing
with no signal and no marked crosswalk.

The top three contributing factors assigned to pedestrians (as a
percentage of total pedestrian collisions) were, in order of
(1) Pedestrian error/confusion (16.1%);
(2) Alcohol involvement (3.8%);
(3) Failing to yield to right of way (2.2%);

The top three contributing factors assigned to involved drivers
(as a percentage of total pedestrian collisions) were, in order of
(1) Driver inattentive (30.6%);
(2) Failing to yield to right of way (18.6%);
(3) Driver error/Confusion (12.3%);

Anonymous said...

If you jaywalk without one hundred percent awareness, you should expect to die before your time (or perhaps it's past time and you're doing our gene pool a favor).

Having said that, I heard on cbc news that this was the fourth pedestrian death this year in Vancouver. Another one was the chinese lady at the very same intersection, which suggests that for a number of reasons this corner is a problem.

Who can deny that cars are a part of the problem in this city? This is the worst Canadian city when it comes to the dominance of motorized traffic. City planners (do they exist?) need to think long and hard about where we go from here.

Anonymous said...


mmm? maybe someone should question this constables job description ,or why the taxpayers are paying for him to stand idly by .