Town Square

Pedestrian, 15, struck in Atherton crosswalk

Original post made on Apr 9, 2009

A Redwood City girl of about 15 ended up in Stanford Hospital with a broken leg on Monday, April 6, after she was hit by a car at around 12:40 p.m. as she was walking across El Camino Real in a crosswalk at Stockbridge Ave., Atherton police reported. The driver was a 73-year-old Atherton man.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 3:46 PM


Like this comment
Posted by Hilda Swann
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Apr 9, 2009 at 7:34 pm

These crosswalks on El Camino are notoriously dangerous. PLEASE INSTALL those wonderful blinking pedestrian crosswalk lights like the one at Oak Grove Avenue at the Post Office and you would stop these pedestrian accidents. There have been many like this and a vast amount of near misses. Because of the amount of minority pedestrians on Middlefield Rd in Redwood City there are also new blinking pedestrian lights now. Amazingly safe to cross there. Get with the 21st century California Transportation Safety Commission.

Like this comment
Posted by Mark Hochor
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Apr 9, 2009 at 7:44 pm

This girl was extremely lucky. Many such folks are near misses on El Camino. Not infrequent. I too have nearly missed a walker or two darting out into traffic without observing. Yes yes yes the pedestrian in a crosswalk HAS the right of way, but LOOK both ways and proceed cautiously on El Camino. Today a man was turning right from El Camino into Jack In The Box and a cyclist was speeding ahead straight and he scraped the cyclist's fender. No damage was done luckily. This is so common. Blinking lights on those pedestrian walkways would certainly do the trick.

Like this comment
Posted by Mark Hochor
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Apr 9, 2009 at 7:51 pm

This girl was lucky. I too have barely missed pedestrians on El Camino and Middlefield. Even though I consider myself a safe driver, never having had an accident, I have infrequently not noticed a pedestrian and think the blinking pedestrian lights are a terrific idea.

Like this comment
Posted by sally
a resident of Woodside: Emerald Hills
on Apr 11, 2009 at 9:40 am

There were 2 cars already stopped at the crosswalk and the 3rd car went around them to hit the girl. Don't blame the victim. The other 2 cars had no trouble seeing the girl. The 3rd car driver is legally required to stop at the crosswalk just because the other 2 cars were stopped, whether or not he saw anyone in the crosswalk.

Like this comment
Posted by Mark Hochor
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Apr 15, 2009 at 1:48 pm

If you read the Police Report, you will see there were NOT 2 cars there. Just one in the slow lane. DON'T BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ dear. No one drove around any stopped cars to drive through the pedestrian crosswalk.

Like this comment
Posted by Concerned Resident
a resident of Atherton: other
on Apr 15, 2009 at 3:44 pm

How does one get the police report about this incident? Very tragic indeed.

Like this comment
Posted by David Boyce
Almanac staff writer
on Apr 15, 2009 at 4:06 pm

David Boyce is a registered user.

Per Lt. Mike Guerra of the Atherton Police Department, accident reports are not available to the general public, which includes newspaper reporters. This is the case with virtually every California law enforcement agency.

To read an accident report requires proof of a vested interest, which usually means you have to be a close relative of one of the parties involved.

The reporting for this story came from Almanac interviews with Atherton police officers, particularly Sgt. Anthony Kockler, who prepared the accident report.

Like this comment
Posted by pedestrian
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Apr 15, 2009 at 5:03 pm

David's comments suggest to me that "Louise" and "Mark," who have been defending the driver, may actually be the driver himself.

I find it sad that Louise and Mark have been trying to excuse the driver rather than suggest he accept responsibility for what could have been a fatal maneuver. Yes, this kind of accident could happen to any driver, but in reality these accidents are rare because most drivers are careful. Most understand that when another driver is stopped in front of a crosswalk, there is usually a reason, and often that reason is a pedestrian.

I would strongly consider taking away the license of anyone who blithely cruisef through a crosswalk in this kind of situation. If the driver were a teenager, I'd return the license in a year or two, but given thid driver's age, might be best if he relinquishes it permanently.

Like this comment
Posted by Mark Hochor
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Apr 21, 2009 at 7:34 pm

To: Pedestrian:
First, you're a bit paranoid.
I represent myself, use my real name, unlike "pedestrian", and would never purport to be someone else. Most folks on this web comment section, I am sure, are honest individuals. This is not "".
And I am certainly not anywhere near 73 years old as the paper said the driver was. LOL.

As to "access" to the police report:
I have a daughter who spoke about the accident to her friend who works in the town office and offhandedly was told that in the report it mentioned the # of cars stopped for this unfortunate young woman. So it was second hand info. Everyone in the town offices were talking about it. Big news for Atherton.

And who is the Louise you mention?

I am certainly not excusing this elderly driver. Anyone with 1/2 a brain would know that striking a pedestrian IN A CROSSWALK is definitely 100% their fault. Duh! I feel very badly for anyone who is struck by a vehicle, whether walking or cycling. I would never excuse a driver, just telling the truth about how often we (society) has a "near miss" while driving. We all have, but perhaps not you. ??
People are quick to pass judgement with only a newspaper report, and we all know how "accurate" those are. LOL
I hope the young lady is not permanently injured and I hope the driver loses his license or at least is suspended pending re-testing. End of story for me. On to the political section.