Are violators of pedestrian crosswalks a problem in the area?
Yes, says Electric City resident Steve Salstrom, who has complained about the motorists who zoom by even when people are in the crosswalks.
Salstrom stated that on one occasion he was midway across a crosswalk and had motorists pass him on both sides.
He complained again at the Oct. 8 Electric City council meeting, stating that he had someone zoom by him at what he thought was about “45 miles per hour.” The crosswalk in question is the one by the Electric City post office and the speed limit through the city is 35 mph.
Salstrom also noted that people who park in front of the post office while getting their mail sometimes park in the crosswalk area, yet, he says, “nothing is done about it.” He asked the council to send a letter to the Grand Coulee police department asking for enforcement. The council didn’t respond directly to his request.
Grand Coulee Police Chief Mel Hunt said his officers haven’t been writing tickets on crosswalk issues. He said that if there were serious violations his officers would do so.
The fine for a crosswalk violation is $126, higher in a school zone.
“A violation occurs when a pedestrian addresses the crosswalk and the motorist doesn’t stop,” Hunt stated.
The chief, who has been here over 30 years, recalls only two occasions when people have been hit going across a crosswalk in Grand Coulee. One was when a young child ran out in front of a car in front of Safeway, and the other was a person hit in a crosswalk in front of city hall.
Chief Hunt also stated that he has no record of Salstrom ever making a formal complaint.
Coulee Dam Police Chief Pat Collins said that crosswalk violations in that town haven’t been a problem.
“We have issued warnings a few time, but haven’t had to write tickets,” he stated.
He said his officers remind motorists that when a person enters a crosswalk they have the right-of-way.