Why can't drivers stay behind the white line?


As some of you on here know, I’m visually impaired and I walk to work every day. I have to cross at this busy intersection and EVERY day, some driver pulls up way passed the white line that he/she is suppoed to be behind and has their car streached all the way accross the cross walk. This forces me to walk out into the middle of the intersection risking getting hit by prralell traffic. usually, there is no room to walk behind the car because the next car behind him/her is pulled all the way up to that car’s bumper.

is this the proper way to wait at a red light? what the bleep is the white line behind the cross walk for if it’s okay for cars to just pull up as far as they want to? do they really think the extra ten feet will get them to their destination faster? is it too difficult to see where you are going when parked behind that white line? I honestly want to know as I have never driven a car. I want to know if I’m the one out of line. I just can’t figure out why a cross walk is even there if I can’t walk in it.


I personally think a crosswalk at a corner is a waste of white paint.


I both drive and walk a lot, and believe me, I HATE it when drivers do this. Really, it isn’t that hard to stop behind the crosswalk. Just slow down as you approach the intersection and watch for the line. To make things even easier, most intersections have a “stop” line as well as the crosswalk, so you have two chances to stop before you’ve pulled out too far.

I have NEVER had problems stopping behind the crosswalk, in all kinds of weather conditions. If I stopped in a crosswalk, it’s because I didn’t see the changing light or stop sign until it was too late and I just wasn’t able to stop in time. This is not common. Most drivers who stop in crosswalks do so out of sheer laziness (the same laziness that stops drivers from using turn signals. This also annoys me – I never know if it’s safe to step out into a street because I have no idea if the drivers on the cross street are planning on turning.)

What annoys me even more is the drivers who cause massive traffic jams because they refuse to stop behind the “stop” line and then a bus can’t make a right turn from a cross street until half a dozen drivers back up.


That must be so frustrating for you!

I think it really depends on the city you live and what part of the city you are in.

Where I live (in the areas that I drive) this doesn’t seem to be a common problem. If it happens, it’s usually because the light changed and the person stopped instead of going through a yellow/red but couldn’t stop before the line.

I think people who do it out of laziness or inconsideration should be fined…but then I think there are many driving offences that should be punishable but that would require a super-huge police force, lol.



I’m guilty of this - I must confess. :frowning: Not that I do it all the time, and I am quite courteous to pedestrians, more so than most drivers I think. But sometimes I do pull past the cross walk if I am making a turn so I can see into the intersection better.

It’s no excuse for being thoughtless, but it is why I do sometimes pull ahead too far.

I’ll try to be better about this now that you have made me consider my actions. :frowning:



This is a good point – if I am making a right turn on red, I will pull out into the crosswalk (after scanning the crosswalk to make sure that nobody is using it) so I can make my turn. Not doing so would actually be dangerous – if I started the turn without pulling into the crosswalk and stopping, I might not see an approaching pedestrian.

I think the original post was in reference to drivers who stupidly stop in the crosswalk when they were going straight to begin with.


I am the Queen of “Don’t block the box!” when I drive in New York. But traffic is so unpredictable that even with the best intentions you can get caught in the crosswalk.

I’m the one everybody honks at because I won’t go when the light is green if there’s no space on the other side of the street. Of course, the guy behind me zooms ahead of me on the right and puts himself where *I *should be going so I have to wait even longer . . .

Don’t assume people block the crosswalk intentionally – at least not in New York!


oh mercygate…we need to teach you how to drive like a NY cabbie:D …(just kidding)


This thread reminded me of the time (back in '98) when hubby and I went to Montreal to visit his family around Christmas time.

The difference in driving styles between Edmonton and Montreal is like night and day! People here are, for the most part, courteous and not insane, lol. But in Montreal they are insane and rude!

We even had a cab driver get out and yell at us because we wouldn’t make a right turn on a red light because the crosswalk was FULL of people (not even a tiny space). I guess he wanted us to run them over:rolleyes:

When hubby first moved to Edmonton he was shocked at how polite people were, especially drivers. Cars would actually stop to allow him to jaywalk downtown, lol.



I know what you mean. I’m an outdoor runner in our neighborhoods, and I know exactly which intersections drivers will pull up to, pass by the stop sign and not even slow down, let alone look to see if there is anyone on the sidewalk to cross, and blow right through to turn either left or right. I’m always cautious at these intersections and often I see their car jerk to a stop with wheels screetching when they finally see me.

I’m just waiting to hear someone getting into a pedestrian accident because of these inattentive drivers.

Stay aware, stay alive.


isn’t that the truth! when I used to have a cell phone, I would yap on the phone with a friend or to my mom as I walked to work. but as soon as I got to this particualr street that I meantioned in my OP, I would say to the person on the phone, “Hey I gotta hang up. I’m at the death trap and I need all my seanses!” I am constently watching in all directions as best I can when crossing streets because as my mom likes to day, “I swear to glory, people get behind that wheel and lose their ever lovin’ minds” she’s a country girl :slight_smile:


That’s fair enough. As long as you actually STOP at the light first. I see so many drivers who think that a red light is a green right arrow.


Your mama’s right because when people get on these county roads here its a free for all. No speed limits, until they get into the city limits and then they crawl:rolleyes:
and its not the regular folks, the sheriff’s will drive just as nuts, they’ll cut the speeder off and you think its an emergency (no lights) to find out he’s just going home for lunch:rolleyes:


Ah, Sue…if only you could carry a seeing aid cane and give the bumpers of the offending drivers a good whack for encroaching on the crosswalk. A few dinged bumpers or missing hood ornaments might convert folks if courtesy and consideration won’t.


believe me, Island oak, the thought has crossed my mind MANY times. I don’t need a cane, but I have one and it’s made of a very hard plastic and I’ve wanted to just pretend to be totally blind and just slam it into the side of someone’s car. but than, I realize that that’s probably not the charatible christian thing to do. but it’s fun to fantasize about doing it, at least:D


Heh, I’ve been known to glare at drivers that stopped in the crosswalk as I walk in front of them (I know, I know…there’s that charity thing…and the road-rage thing…)


When I was in High School in Beirut, Lebanon, there were NO crosswalks, and traffic lights were just pretty ornaments hung over the road. Crossing a busy street was a major health hazard. If you had a break in the traffic, and you looked at the approaching vehicle/driver before stepping off the sidewalk, he would speed up so you couldn’t make it across in time. You had to learn how to look out of the corner of your eye without turning your head and just step out in front of them.:bigyikes: Talk about stepping out in faith… If they thought you didn’t see them, they would slow down to let you cross. The first time I did it, I was terrified. One person I knew took a small rolled up newspaper or magazine with her when she went downtown. She was pretty clever at hiding the paper so they couldn’t see it. If the offending vehicle was too close when it passed her (they used to miss us by inches), she gave it a thump with the newspaper. No damage was done to the vehicle and it sounded for all the world like the car had hit her. They would stop and get out to see if she was ok, a major traffic jam resulting. While she was assuring everyone that she wasn’t hurt, the rest of us could cross the street in safety after her.

Then we’d go on vacation to England where they have something called a ‘Zebra Crossing’. This has big black and white stripes painted across the road and an orange flashing light on either side. Pedestirans have right of way on a zebra crossing, so if you just put a foot on it, all the traffic, both ways, must stop and let you cross. It was an amazing feeling of power to stop traffic like that when we were used to playing dodge’m all the time.

Sue, maybe if you carry your cane, stop at the offending car and make a point of carefully feeling your way around it, taking your time, showing your fear of being forced into oncoming traffic, they might get the message - at least that one anyway.


Someone once told me a story of a guy who was upset that a car pulled into the crosswalk. So he stayed in his appropriated pathway… walking right across the car’s hood!


This conversation made me think of this… youtube.com/watch?v=zsaawz5dBqc




I wish they would.

I live in Kansas, where stopping beyond the white stop line is considered running a red light. I wish they would ticket this heavily.

After a few fines, most of the offenders would stop.

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