The Daily Gamecock

Letter to the Editor: Crosswalk safety on campus could be improved, not just a pedestrian concern

Dear Editor, 

As I walk around campus, I see dozens of big signs that say some variation of “eyes up, phones down” or “ears on, headphones off.” The implication of these signs is that student pedestrians are causing accidents by not being attentive to traffic. What I’ve found in my experience is the exact opposite. 

I do not use my phone or headphones when I’m walking around campus, and I only cross streets when the crosswalk signs direct me to. Just the other day, crossing Blossom at Bull on a clear “Walk” sign, a woman was turning right onto Blossom and nearly hit me. She honked several times and shouted at me “You don’t cross on a green light!” But she was the one in the wrong — I was fully within my right to cross, as I was crossing in front of a red with a “Walk” sign directive. 

Elsewhere around Columbia, I sometimes see signs near traffic lights that state “Turning traffic yield to pedestrians.” I think there needs to be one of these signs at every major campus intersection, and perhaps other types of reminders to drivers that pedestrians have the right of way. This would address the real root of the safety problem — reckless drivers, not inattentive students. 


Hannah Fox