It may seem like an obvious message, but new billboards around town are warning you to look both ways before crossing the street. The new campaign by Cal Trans is urging pedestrians to be more aware before stepping into the street.
Terri Crawford was hit by a car in 2014, and wants other people to adhere to the campaign’s message.
"I felt a dull thud on the right side on my leg, which was the bumper of the car and it threw me," Crawford said about the night she was hit.
It was dark and Crawford thought she was in a crosswalk when she got hit, but she wasn’t.
"I got about halfway through the first lane there and I got by the car," Crawford explained.
She’s one of a growing number of pedestrians hit by cars in Riverside County. Cal Trans wants more people to do the obvious and look both ways before stepping in the road.
"The pictures of people with tread marks down their face, it makes people aware that you’re traveling a heavy automobile at high speeds, that pedestrian and cyclist has no chance," Mayor Robert Moon of Palm Springs said.
Now Crawford knows the risks of crossing the street and not paying attention.
"In those first couple of seconds, my first thought was boy am I going to be real sore when I get up tomorrow," she said.
It took her nearly six months to drive and walk again.
A doctor at Desert Regional Medical Center said the number of pedestrians and cyclists admitted for automobile accidents has increased nearly 60% in the last 4 years.
"They’ve suffered traumatic brain injury, blunt torso trauma, pelvic fractures, lung bone injuries, coma, head injuries, really life changing injuries," Dr. Frank Ercoli said.
Crawford wants everyone, whether you’re behind the wheel or not, to be more careful.
"Pedestrians have the right away, but cars are bigger. So even if you look twice, you probably want to look again," Crawford said.
Look both ways, and make sure you’re crossing in the crosswalk.