Earlier this month a pedestrian was hit by a car while walking in a cross walk near FSU’s campus. This is the second person in the last two weeks to be hit by a car resulting in the pedestrian’s injury or death.
On January 30, 2020 a 19 year old FSU student, Natalie Nickchen, was struck by a car and killed while she was walking across a cross walk on West Tennessee St. The driver of the car, 24 year old Ivey Green, ran a red light causing the accident. According to officials Green will not be criminally charged.
Just four days later, after Nickchen’s death, on Monday afternoon, another person was struck by a car while crossing St. Augustine Street. The pedestrian was taken to the hospital due to injuries sustained during the accident. The driver of the vehicle was cited for the accident and found to be at fault. Neither the driver or the pedestrian in the second incident have been identified by the police at this time.
The Public Information Officer, Kevin Bradshaw, with Tallahassee Police Department stated “We are constantly reevaluating pedestrian patterns to make improvements.” According to Officer Bradshaw the Florida Department of Transportation handles the crosswalks and works with the TPD to make improvements in areas with heavy traffic.
One student at FSU – who is outraged by the tragic loss of Nickchen – has begun a petition to build more pedestrian tunnels or pedestrian bridges along Tennessee St. and other busy roads near the campus. The student, Noelle Enright, told ABC 27, that driver’s do not pay attention and if “drivers won’t slow down there needs to be another way for people to get to the other side of the road safely.” The petition has garnered over 13,200 signatures.
Another FSU student, Kayla Walston, who walks to campus crossing over Tennessee St. every Tuesday and Thursday says “I’ve had a few close calls with drivers hesitating to stop and thinking of running a red light. It’s scary crossing those busy roads. I think after this tragic accident it is time to make changes…”
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, “an estimated 6,227 pedestrians were killed in 2018, an increase of 250 from 2017.” Since 2008 there has been an increase of pedestrian fatalities of 41 percent, which now makes up 16 percent of all traffic fatalities in the U.S.