Downtown crossing dangers - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Chris Conte

Downtown crossing dangers

ROCHESTER (KTTC-DT)-- On Tuesday afternoon a pedestrian riding a scooter was struck by a car in downtown Rochester while trying to cross the street and officials say although drivers by law have to stop at all crosswalks, pedestrians also have to watch out for what's going on around them.

"Almost everyday there's [an accident] because people do not pay attention downtown," says Sergeant Craig Anderson of the Rochester Police Department.

The person struck in Tuesday's accident was not seriously injured but was taken to the hospital as a precaution, which according the Department of Public Safety happens to more than 59,000 people every year.

"The pedestrians need to learn that they can't just dart out in the middle of the street or go against any of the lights," Anderson notes.

Pedestrian deaths account for about 12 percent of all traffic fatalities in the United States, which is close to 4,000 killed every year just trying to cross the street.

"For some reason people seem to have issue, when they're downtown...they're head is not in the game," says Anderson.

Officials are hoping that newly designed intersection and improved safety features will help keep pedestrians and drivers safe as Rochester's population and the number of people traveling downtown, continues to grow.

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