Pedestrian accidents can happen for many reasons, but one of the reasons pointed out in this case simply isn’t a good enough excuse. Drivers know that certain times of the day mean that the sun sits low in the sky, and that poses a visibility risk. Drivers who can’t see well because of the sun should either pull over or slow down significantly.
Failing to do that puts others at risk. Police have identified a pedestrian who was struck and killed in the downtown area of Lake Oswego, according to news from Jan. 5, and the accident was due to this very reason. The report states that the woman who was killed was a 66-year-old who was walking near the downtown fire station. She was hit by a car in the late afternoon when an 85-year-old driver made a left turn onto Third Street.
He told police that he couldn’t see the woman because of the sun in his eyes. He struck the woman, which knocked her down, but he did not stop. He continued over her at a slow speed. She suffered severe injuries and did not survive the accident; firefighters from the station rushed out to help but were unable to revive her.
The driver remained at the scene, and police have not said if he will face charges. This was reportedly the first pedestrian death in the city in over 10 years.
In situations like this one, simple changes might have saved a life. Wearing sunglasses, taking a different route or slowing down can help prevent accidents in bright conditions. If you’re struck because of weather-related hazards, it’s important to look into your options, because all victims have a right to be heard.
Source: Portland Tribune, “Police identify pedestrian who was struck and killed in downtown Lake Oswego,” Jan. 05, 2017