Teenager struck and killed while walking on the side of the road

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A teenager was hit and killed last weekend by a truck in Putnam County.  According to the FHP, the crashed happened around 9 p.m. by Stokes Landing Road and Kid Lane.  Investigators say a young man was walking on Stokes Landing Road with his sister when a 2002 Dodge Ram work truck crossed the center line, hit and killed him. The 12 year old sister was not injured and ran to call for help. The driver did not stop and fled the scene.  “The driver of the truck made no attempt to assist the pedestrian, and continued south,” according the FHP report.  After a BOLO was issued for him, the driver, the 50-year-old male from Palatka, turned himself in and told police where they could find the truck, which was towed to a secure Florida Department of Law Enforcement Facility. Troopers said the driver didn’t think he killed someone.

Our thoughts are with the family of the young man who died in this tragic accident.

Did you know in 2012, 4,743 pedestrians were killed and an estimated 76,000 were injured in traffic crashes in the United States  On average, a pedestrian was killed every 2 hours and injured every 7 minutes in traffic crashes.

NHTSA provides helpful tips to prevent pedestrian accidents:

  • Be Prepared Before Walking.
  • Be seen—wear clothes or materials to make you more visible to others: Bright clothing during the day; Reflective gear; Use lights at night or when visibility is poor (white in front, red in the rear – just like a car);
  • Plan your safest route—safer routes have less traffic, slower speeds, lighting, sidewalks, and, if possible, separate you from traffic (i.e., sidewalks, paths, a barrier).
  • Follow the rules and laws put in place to increase your safety:  Walk on sidewalks, if they’re there. If not, walk as far to the left, facing traffic;  Look left-right-left and behind for traffic before crossing a driveway or road; Cross in marked crosswalks, at corners, or at intersections; Obey pedestrian crossing signals;  While crossing, look left and right for traffic; be prepared to get out of the way if a driver doesn’t seem to see you; Look for Traffic; Look for cars backing up; look for white backup lights or signs the motor is running; Expect others not to see you. Some drivers may be distracted. Do not step in to the roadway until the driver has stopped for you, or has acknowledged your intent to cross with eye contact, a wave or a nod; Walk Defensively; Walk focused and alert. No texting, listening to music or anything that takes your eyes, ears, or your mind, off the road and traffic; Anticipate what other road users might do—turns, pulling out of a parking space or driveway, backing up. The sooner you notice a potential conflict, the quicker you can act to avoid it.
  • Give drivers extra time to slow or stop, especially in poor weather (ice, snow, rain), and low visibility (dusk, dawn, fog, or night). Just because you can see others, does not mean they can see you.

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