Pedestrian Hit by Bus, Killed in North Las Vegas

Aug. 22, 2013

A man was struck and killed by a commercial bus this morning in North Las Vegas.

North Las Vegas Police said the accident happened about 5:30 a.m. in the 1800 block of West Cheyenne Avenue, near Scott Robinson Boulevard.

A preliminary investigation indicates the bus was traveling west on Cheyenne when traffic slowed abruptly. The bus swerved into an adjacent lane to miss the cars in front of it, and struck a pedestrian crossing the street, police spokeswoman Chrissie Coon said.

The man died at the scene.

Seventy percent of pedestrian deaths occur outside of a crosswalk or crossing against a signal. However, distracted drivers risk running over pedestrians through negligence, speeding, or carelessly changing lanes.

Pedestrians need to follow safety rules when crossing a street but in a congested city like Las Vegas, with wide roads, big distance between signaled intersections, it is not as simple. Perhaps more crosswalks are needed but traffic engineers need to pay attention where people are crossing instead of where they want them to cross.

There is a growing recognition that street design has focused on automobile travel while not providing amenities for bicycles and pedestrians. Consequently, the transportation commission aims to update streets to accommodate all forms of travel: Making car lanes slimmer and sidewalks wider are part of that plan, along with decreasing speed limits, adding bike lanes and increasing the distance between cars and pedestrians.

Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) officials revamped a 12-mile stretch of Sahara Avenue in the past couple of years to include more cues for drivers that pedestrians are around: bus lanes, wider sidewalks with curbside trees, and median landscaping. In March 2012, the agency fired up the first high-intensity activated crosswalk, or HAWK, signal on Sahara Avenue near 15th Street, east of Maryland Parkway. A preliminary study of the signal’s effectiveness showed it reduced jay¬walking rates in the area. One in three pedestrians was jaywalking before. Now it’s down to one in 11. Pedestrians are now crossing in a place where drivers are expecting them and will yield to them.