It should be a seemingly simple thing. As drivers, we know that green means go, red means stop. (Although yellow is still up in the air. Go faster? Stop? It’s a toss up.)
As pedestrians, it should be simple. In rural or suburban areas, look both ways before you cross the street. Hopefully we learned this as children. Children. Meaning by the time you are old enough to hold down a job in the Loop, you should have had DECADES of practice crossing the street.
Without fail, EVERY DAY, I see pedestrians who don’t understand the simple signals on a streetlight.
Red Hand = Don’t Walk
Typically, when cross traffic gets a red light, that means shortly thereafter, YOU will get a WALK symbol.
Every day … EVERY DAY … at the same interesections … people seem thrown for a loop by this crazy thing called a LEFT TURN ARROW. Guess what? That means you don’t get to walk yet.
Every day I see people dart into the street. Almost get hit by a turning car (or worse, bus). EVERY DAY. Commuters, I know you walk the SAME STREETS, and cross the same intersections, EVERY SINGLE DAY. Five days a week. For months, years … decades even. Don’t act like you don’t know about the green turn arrow.
Please stop darting into the street. Or … natural selection, whatever. Have at it.
And cars, please stop cheating the green arrow. When it’s gone, it’s gone, and as soon as that red hand turns to a white person (whoa, just realized how racist streetlights are), the pedestrians will stream into the cross walk, and you will get stuck, causing gridlock.
Sadly, I realize the people who read my blog are all super intelligent and I’m preaching to the choir. But who else cringes when walking in the Loop during rush hour?