BREAKING NEWS — Pedestrian Struck by Taxi in Ballston

by ARLnow.com July 18, 2012 at 10:44 am 9,399 146 Comments

Update at 3:35 p.m. on 7/19/12 — The victim has died, according to police.

Investigators are on the scene of a critical pedestrian accident in Ballston.

The accident happened around 9:45 a.m. at the intersection of Glebe Road and N. Carlin Springs Road. An elderly female pedestrian was in the crosswalk, crossing Carlin Springs across from Ballston Common Mall, when she was struck by an Arlington Yellow Cab, according to Arlington County Police spokesman Dustin Sternbeck.

The woman’s injuries are thought to be life-threatening.

A neighbor told ARLnow.com that the pedestrian was a resident of The Carlin retirement home, one block away  from the scene.

A number of closures were in place while investigators took photos and interviewed witnesses. All southbound lanes of Glebe Road were blocked at Wilson Boulevard. Carlin Springs Road was shut down at N. Thomas Street. Both road reopened at 11:05 a.m.

Sternbeck said the driver of the cab remained on scene and cooperated with police. No word yet on any charges against the driver.

Warning: Readers might find one of the photos below disturbing.

  • Clarendon Lover

    Terrible. I hope the woman will be ok.

    • kathleen taylor

      god bless her, hope she will be ok. hope she has a good lawyer to fight for her. i can understand how she feels , i was struck by a taxi cab on my green walk sigh, driver did not yeild

  • arlington resident

    I hope the lady survives this accident. God bless her.

  • MC 703

    Thoughts and prayers with the woman.

  • JohnB2

    Hope she’s ok!

  • Neutrino

    I hope she recovers and I hope the driver is fully punished.

    • James Moron

      Why are you so certain it was the driver’s fault? She might not have had the light.

      • J Nice 05

        Did you not see the sign that says, NO RIGHT TURN WHEN PEDESTRIANS ARE PRESENT!!!! Regardless if he had the light or not, it clearly states he can’t make the right while she’s in the crosswalk. Also, she was doing the right thing by walking in the crosswalk, so why would she do something dumb and walk against the light. This is another case of CAB DRIVERS thinking they OWN THE ROAD!

        • kathleen taylor

          totally agree with you. thumbs up

        • kathleen taylor

          sounds like the cab driver should have yeilded but they did not. i agree with your comment

  • David

    Terrible, I live near there and used to cross this street every day (twice a day) headed to metro and it is a terrible intersection, though decently marked cross-walks and lights, you constantly see car speeding through making turns etc. and very nearly hitting people all the time. I was always worried and alert in this intersection but can easily see how some one can get hit there, seems like the taxi was making a right turn, perhaps looking left to look for oncoming traffic and not seeing the lady to his right. I even contacted APD a few years back asking them to look at the intersection looking for cars that turn right on red nearly hitting pedestrians. I hope the lady is OK.

    • arl2012

      You see this all up and down Wilson and Clarendon. My kids and I are almost struck daily crossing Wilson and Clarendon blvds in the heart of Clarendon. People are rushing to make the lights and try to swing out before or duing pedestrians in the walkway. I have a tiny 4 year old they can barely see. The ones hanging a left don’t even look at the crosswalk they are staring straight ahead to watch when they can hang a left and then make a fast turn without even noticing there are people with the WALK sign in the middle of the crosswalk. My kids know never to go immediately on WALK we are constantly assessing what some a**hole is about to do.

      That poor woman–my thoughts are with her and her family.

      • TomTom

        Yesterday at Wilson and Randolph a person heading north on Randolph made a left onto Wilson without stopping to look for peds, they then slammed on the brakes to not hit the peds.

        This forced a Metrobus heading south and with right of way to also slam on the brakes. Happens far too often. People need to start paying attention.

        • Harry

          It’s really scary, this is why I always try to make eye contact with drivers who are about to turn before crossing in front of them. People are staring at the road, not the sidewalks.

  • Don

    I saw the lady lying on the ground surrounded by people this morning when I was driving down the opposite side of Glebe. Terrible. God bless this lady.

  • Chris Slatt

    Hopefully the Glebe Road Safety Improvements project will help prevent these tragedies in the future.


  • Elspeth

    Really awful, poor woman. I hope she survives and can make a full recovery. This is such a dangerous dangerous area for pedestrians!! Wonder what kind of safety measures can be implemented: raised crosswalks? underpasses? Too much going on to distract both drivers and pedestrians…

    • AJ

      a full NO RIGHT ON RED should do it.

      • JJDRP

        The No turn on Red will help, but the bigger problem is that pedestrians crossing Glebe has the walk sign when the driver turning right also has a green light. Drivers have to pay attention in that intersection. Maybe a turning light should be installed so that drivers have green only after the walk sign goes off.

        BTW, I was told that the driver is new. Maybe he was not familiar with that intersection and was in too much of a hurry to grab his next fare.

        I hope that the lady has a speedy recovery.

        • AJ

          “Maybe a turning light should be installed so that drivers have green only after the walk sign goes off. ”

          there are several intersections in the area whose safety would be substantially improved with a turn arrow rather than a free right turn on green. glebe/carlin springs is one; lorcom/old dominion is another.

        • kathleen taylor

          taxi driver sounds like a real moron, this pedestrain had the right of way, he should have paid more attention and he would have been able to stop. i can understand how this person feels, iam dealing with a very similar problem

      • zzzSleeper

        The NO RIGHT ON RED hasn’t saved me at the Harris Teeter at N Glebe and Randolph! Trying to cross Randolph on the Harris Teeter side is really taking a chance. The sign is there, but many do not pay attention to it.

  • CherrydaleParent

    I hope they take that driver’s taxi license away. The “No Turn on Red” sign couldn’t be clearer.

    My pre-teen son crosses that intersection to catch an ART bus home from camp in the afternoons, and my wife and I debated whether it was safe to let him do it alone. I guess she wins, and I’ll be leaving work early the rest of the month.

    • susan

      Taxicabs are even worse than regular drivers, I see it all the time. They are very discourteous to other drivers, and especially to pedestrians, because they are always racing to pick up another fare.

      • Brian

        and nothing to do about it. For example in DC I’ve had drivers nearly run me off the road and flip me off. I’ve complained to the Taxicab Commission and they say they don’t have enforcement powers about that stuff, even drivers committing traffic infractions on camera.

        • Thes

          The Arlington taxi inspector is much less lax. I’ve been in a cab that was pulled over by the inspector for running a red light. I later learned that the driver was called in for questioning and then put on a 6-month probationary period, with the threat loss of license for any additional violations.

      • jan

        Please don’t compare Arlington taxi drivers to those of DC. I have used Red Top for 45 years (wow!) and have always had a safe and courteous experience.

        • susan

          I was not comparing Arlington taxi drivers with any other jurisdiction, I was simply making an observation. I have also used RedTop, and many, perhaps most, are safe and courteous, but there are quite a few that are not, and not just RedTop. This “accident” is inexcusable, taxi driver or not.

          • Neutrino

            All cabbies around here drive like this is Tunisia or something.

      • kathleen taylor

        picking up anouther fare should not mean driving reckless . this needs to change

  • CW

    This is very bad.

    That is a dangerous intersection – the gas station, the long crosswalk across Glebe, the cars coming obscured out of the Mall garage, all of it. I am scared of it as a driver and have never even tried to navigate it as a pedestrian.

    • CrystalMikey

      I hear that, I’m also not a fan of approaching that intersection as a driver, let alone on foot!

  • Brian

    All the best to the woman.

    Clearly the driver was in disregard of the law and given the multiple traffic violations I see cabbies make daily ACPD needs to make an example of him. Take his hack license away, fine the company and him and if G-d forbid the woman dies, look into involuntary manslaughter charges.

    • J. Ballston

      One of the photos shows the cabbie trying to explain something to one of the cops. Common decency would hope that he’s just simply explaining what happened and he’s not trying to twist this into making it her fault, when he very clearly disobeyed the NTOR sign and the yield right of way to pedestrians law. Although in all likelihood, he thinks he didn’t do anything wrong and is trying to make his case for that.

      Most DC/VA/MD cabbies think they are above traffic laws for whatever reason and it drives me insane. Viva Uber.

      • MarkL

        And you know the cabbie didn’t have a green light and the pedestrian didn’t walk against the signal because you were there? Don’t get me wrong – I hope if the cabbie gets due punishment for any fault, but the speculation on these comments everytime there’s an accident around here by armchair accident reconstruction experts is laughable.

        • Brian

          Yes, because you would be crazy to cross Glebe against the light. And it’s damn near impossible with the traffic flow at that hour, especially as an older woman.

          • drax

            So maybe she’s crazy. Or confused. Or has bad eyesight. People do cross against lights sometimes.

            Hasn’t anyone learned not to be judge and jury on the Internet yet?

            If it’s the cabbie’s fault, throw the book at him. But let the police and lawyers work out exactly what happened first.

          • Neutrino

            Is this a Trayvon reference? Because, racist or not, Zimmerman is a murderer.

          • Jessica

            I work a block down from there and I see on a daily basis people crossing glebe with no signal. I have to make the U-Turn at Harris Teeter and when I have the green light to turn I’ve almost hit people because they decided to cross without a proper walking signal. So it does happen. Not saying it did here but yes, people are crazy enough to cross glebe and stand in the tiny median without a signal.

          • Brian

            I totally agree. Pedestrians are quite stupid and cross the street against the light ALL THE TIME. They sometimes seem to leap right out at you. Very frustrating that they can’t wait for the light to change, or head to where there’s a crosswalk (another major pedestrian problem). I wouldn’t mind seeing some jaywalking tickets given out here and there.

          • shellshock868

            So lets all agree that both walkers are impatient as well as the drivers. Why can’t everyone just slow down and wait a few seconds??? If you are really in such a rush, you probably should have left your previous location 10 minutes earlier. Both sides need to wise up, look both ways, peds – look out for cars and don’t cross against the light, cars – look out for peds and wait for the green too!

          • Eds

            Yeah, because older people never get confused or have a hard time seeing.

        • susan

          O.k, granted, I am sick and tired of pedestrians that totally disregard the traffic signals, because they are yappng or texting on their phones or just don’t care, but this was an elderly woman, maybe a bit confused and fragile, and I think we all have to account for that, because we will ALL be there someday!

        • JackFan

          Mark – don’t you know that everyone on this site is an expert at everything? How dare you question their analysis of this situation? 🙂

        • AJ

          “The taxi was turning right on a red light at about 9:30 a.m., said Dustin Sternbeck, a spokesman for Arlington police.”

          (from the Washington Post)

        • bobco85

          There’s also the possibility that the elderly woman was not able to make it across before the light turned red. I can imagine it happening in this case where the Carlin Springs light would turn green, the taxi driver’s line of sight blocked by the cars in the middle lane (whose cars would be sitting there waiting for the woman to finish crossing), and the taxi not seeing the woman in time as she came out in front of the right lane. It would still be the taxi driver’s fault because you do have to yield to pedestrians who are in a crosswalk.

          Just another hypothesis as to what really happened to pass the time while we wait for the actual information.

          • bobco85

            Never mind my story, I just saw AJ’s comment and confirmed from the Washington Post.

        • ARLwahoo

          The law is you don’t hit someone, regardless of what is going on. If he had the green, fine, he doesn’t get “Failed to Yield”. But he hit someone and it’s his fault. A lady moving that slow, who may be hard of hearing and sight, didn’t just jump out in front of the car like a kid running after a ball would. At busy intersections, drivers should observe their situation and see if something/someone is in their way, or could possibly be in their way, before entering the intersection. Check the corners for people looking to cross, with or without the light.

          This “don’t hit things rule” was instilled in me from 15 1/2 when I was first able to get my permit. My dad ‘s rule was “you hit something, your fault, you as a driver should maintain control of your vehicle”. Some things, like a deer or a child running out from behind a car chasing a ball or a car running a red light, sometimes cannot be avoided. But a pedestrian should not be hit..observe your surroundings and think ahead. Just like a car in the middle of the intersection blocking you, don’t hit it just because they’re wrong.

          • drax

            It’s possible to have poor sight lines and make a right turn and not see a pedestrian until it is too late too. Not saying it happened here (or that the cabbie wasn’t wrong anyway for turning against a light) but it’s another thing that can’t be avoided.

          • Neutrino

            All pedestrian accidents can be avoided if you drive correctly.

        • J. Ballston

          I see your point but you would have to be fairly ignorant of your surroundings not to see an elderly woman crossing the street when you were turning right. I doubt seriously she “darted” in front of him. Common sense would dictate that a green light does not mean you now have permission to hit someone on the street because, hell, it doesn’t mean you broke the law. It’s the guy in hospital’s fault for getting in the way of my car! My car! Me!

          In any case, a later comment stated that ACPD confirmed he was turning right on red with the presence of pedestrians which means he broke the law.

      • susan

        You are sure right on that!

      • kathleen taylor

        taxi drivers are not above following laws. if they drive this reckless they need to pay the price for there misdeeds , by having there license revoked. zero tolerance

  • TomTom

    Off topic but anyone have any idea why a few of the squad cars have their hoods open? Does it help cool it down or what?

    • JohnB

      Doesn’t seem to be universal so maybe it’s just the officer’s choice.

    • ARLwahoo

      I’ve seen other cops do this when they had dog crates in the back. I think the leave the A/C running and open the hood to cool the engine off?

    • yea

      i’ve seen this too. Sometimes without K9’s in the back. I would think it is to help the engine expel hot air, since the car is probably sitting for hours in the sun with the car on. He probably has his emergency lights on for when he is blocking traffic.

  • mms

    How many pedestrians have been hit this past month? Doesn’t it seem like an awful lot? The traffic is increasing, density is increasing, and it seems like the measures that are in place are not working. I am including the poor woman who died being hit by the bike also. People need to slow down and look, but the county also needs to evaluate their “traffic calming” efforts.

    • shellshock868


  • Buckingham Bandit

    I live on N. George Mason Drive, and I experience speeders both on N. Glebe, as well as N. GM Drive. Invariably, you get speeders (often commuters) who want to zip from Ballston to either US-50 or I-66. I’m well aware of that intersection and sadly I’m not surprised about that accident

    I say, not jokingly, give the streets back to the locals. Turn them into one-lane roads. I don’t know why we allow our local intersections to be dangerous for residents, just so that commuters can get out to Fairfax and Loudoun a little bit quicker.

  • Flying Spaghetti Monster

    I’m getting 2 distinct themes here:

    1. No punishment is too harsh for the driver who is clearly guilty before proven innocent.

    2. God bless the victim (even though God was obviously doing the dishes while she was in jeopardy).

    • CherrydaleParent

      1. The evidence is clear from the photos, but of course the driver should get due process before losing his hack license.
      2. The driver has free will. God can’t turn him into an automoton, but can comfort the victim in her recovery.

      • JamesE

        “The evidence is clear from the photos” Time stops at that intersection when an accident occurs? Don’t get me wrong Taxi drivers are terrible but there is no clear evidence from any of those photos because you have no idea what the signals were at the time.

      • JackFan

        Please explain how the ‘evidence is clear from the photos’? Maybe you should forward this ‘clear evidence’ to the ACPD. I’m sure they’d be mightily grateful that the armchair detectives on Arl Now have closed this case for them.

      • B Div

        >2. The driver has free will. God can’t turn him into an automoton, but can comfort the victim in her recovery.

        God is omniscient and all-powerful. He can do anything he wants to.
        If he can’t turn him into an automaton, he’s not all-powerful, he’s just some-powerful.

    • Neutrino

      I’m getting two distinct themes here:
      1. You hate people having opinions on things with which they are unfamiliar.
      2. You either hate deities, religion, or well-wishers, I can’t tell which.
      Keeping it classy!

  • Glebe Walker

    Psalm 23
    New International Version (NIV)

    Psalm 23
    A psalm of David.
    1 The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
    2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
    he leads me beside quiet waters,
    3 he refreshes my soul.
    He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
    4 Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
    I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.

    5 You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
    You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
    6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
    and I will dwell in the house of the Lord

  • Rory R

    I am almost certain that Arlington will not only take this mans licence but also give him plenty of jail time .

    Prayers for the woman.

    • JJDRP

      I was riding in a cab past that intersection about 2 hours after the accident and the driver mentioned that a pedestrian was struck by a cab. In reference to the license, he stated that the driver will never drive in Arlington again. Time will tell.

      • Neutrino

        He should be in prison.

  • YTK

    Another miserable street is So Courthouse Road — the cars go FLYING up and down with no regard to anyone, not even other drivers. Speed limit is 25mph – hahaha — no one does that– looks like they’re doing 40mph or more. Kids catch their schoolbuses there- pedestrians walk to and from the bus stops and that office building.

    There used to be a speed trap there– looks like there needs to be another one too — and maybe even a traffic light on South 8th AND at the bottom of the hill.

    • Andy

      How can it be that so many people complain about drivers, and so many drivers are so bad? Could it be that some of us who complain are also bad/inattentive drivers ourselves?

      • Buckingham Bandit

        You are probably correct. That doesn’t invalidate his point though.

        • Neutrino

          Your argument is unrelated to your premise.

    • Sarl

      It’s more speeding buses than the cars on S. Courthouse and they also drive over the yellow line in the middle of the road. The school buses are OK though.

  • PLinARL

    So sad. I used to live two blocks from that intersection, and crossed it all the time. I always walked very quickly across – I was always afraid of being hit, even when clearly in the crosswalk and with the walk sign. I hope she makes a recovery from her injuries.

  • arrrggh dang hurried taxi drivers and terrible intersections…

    hope this poor woman makes a quick recovery.

  • Aaron

    I hope the pedestrian fully recovers.

    I have never understood why they add “When Pedestrians Are Present” to those signs. Obviously when there are pedestrians present, even in the absence of a sign, you’re not supposed to turn right on red and hit them – or even when turning right on green. What then is the intent of these signs? It’s not to prohibit right turns on red.

    Why don’t they just throw up “Don’t Hit Pedestrians” signs throughout the County as a gentle reminder to drivers not to hit pedestrians?

    • Thes

      These signs make it illegal to pull your car into the intersection and honk impatiently at the pedestrians until they disperse and allow you to complete your right turn.

      • B Div

        It’s already illegal. The sign is just a courtesy reminder.

    • Loocy

      I always understood it to mean pedestrians anywhere near the intersection, whether or not I believed they were in the way of where I was going.

  • SimplyDusty

    With the number of pedestrians that regularly cross all of the crosswalks at that intersection, an easy temporary solution might be to have “NO TURN ON RED AT ALL TIMES” from all directions. It’s a dangerous interesection at all times, it’s an easy step to making it just a tad safer and less complicated.

    • WeiQiang

      See also: South Eads & 18th and South Eads & 23rd.

      • WeiQiang

        … sign caveat: 7am – 7pm.

        County revenues noticably ticked up from all the ticket written from those two intersections.

    • Justice

      See also: the right turn onto Wilson Blvd at Veitch street.

      A confusing, chaotic mess of traffic feeding from various streets and pedestrians popping out not only at the crosswalk, but further down Wilson.

      • CW

        Yes, those couple blocks from Veitch down to the MMA place are rough. On Veitch, you’ve got the right turn lane that comes up quickly and also functions as a bus stop; there’s usually a bus obscuring the many pedestrians usually running through there. Plus the bike lane runs right between the travel lane and the newly-formed turn lane/bus stop.

        Then there’s no light on Wilson between Veitch and Barton, and no cars ever heed the painted crosswalks, so any pedestrian trying to cross Wilson, myself included, just makes a mad dash for it between parked cars.

        • ARLwahoo

          No one ever remembers that it’s STATE LAW to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks. I wish they’d put those signs up everywhere.

          • JamesE

            Most drivers stop when the pedestrians are actually crossing, iirc the law states the pedestrian has to cross when it is clear, they cannot just jump out in front of traffic and expect the cars to stop for them.

          • JamesE

            I will say that no one stops for them in the median, which is the law. That is when you get the terrible situation where one car stops and the other lane cannot see the pedestrian a near catastrophic accident almost always happens

          • Neutrino

            Yesterday, traffic wouldn’t let a decrepit old man out of the crosswalk median in Virginia Square. I had to get off my bike and stop the traffic with my own body for him. Still, all the cars just tried to go around me.

          • WillJohnston

            You are not required to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks that you are turning across. That does not seem to apply in this case, but you are not required to stop for every pedestrian in every crosswalk. That blanket statement you made is not entirely accurate.

          • MB


          • WillJohnston


            About in the middle of the page.

            [citation given]

          • MB

            That’s a curious interpretation/point you’re making. You might as well say “Drivers aren’t required to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks.” Well, sure, but it’s about as misleading a statement as you can make short of outright lying.

            It’ll also get you a ticket from ACPD, if you try to drive by that interpretation in front of them during an enforcement effort.

          • drax

            What, this?

            “The drivers of vehicles entering, crossing, or turning at intersections shall change their course, slow down, or stop if necessary to permit pedestrians to cross such intersections safely and expeditiously.

            Pedestrians crossing highways at intersections shall at all times have the right-of-way over vehicles making turns into the highways being crossed by the pedestrians.”

            That’s pretty clear.

          • WillJohnston

            But my original comment to the other commenter is on point. You are allowed to slow down and drive around a pedestrian in a crosswalk as you are making a turn.

            And if they write a ticket for that, well they just don’t know the law.

          • drax

            You must “yield” to a pedestrian. If you are both about to be in the same place at the same time, the car must slow or stop and let the pedestrian proceed. The pedestrian shouldn’t have to slow or stop for a car.

          • WillJohnston

            Or, you can drive around them. The law is quite clear on this.

            And if you read back to the top of these comments, you will see that I was originally correcting the wahoo guy who said “No one ever remembers that it’s STATE LAW to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks” [emphasis in original]. I was correcting his use of the word “stop”, which the law clearly says is not a requirement.

          • MB

            Will, do you think you ever have to stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk? And what minimum buffer/speed would you say satisfies the requirement to drive your vehicle in a way that is “necessary to permit pedestrians to cross such intersections safely and expeditiously”?

          • WillJohnston

            Look, you asked for a citation, and I provided it. My job here is done.

            Go pester a lawyer with your inane followup questions.

          • MB

            Yep, as I thought. Please stop buzzing pedestrians and don’t whine when you get a ticket. It seems you’re not very good at driving *or* the law.

          • WillJohnston

            Look man, I’m really sorry you can’t deal with the citation that I provided for you. You’ll get over it, it’s just the internet. Nobody that you know will ever find out how you got shown up today. It’s all cool.

            And I’ll keep following the law.

          • MB

            Oh, right. Same way I got owned by my 4 year old nephew when we recently played “I have the ball AND the rules!”

            Point conceded. I doff my hat to you, sir.

          • drax


            Yes, a car must yield to any pedestrian already in a crosswalk, or anywhere else for that matter.

            If that wasn’t true, you could just run them over. Or at least leave them stranded in the street waiting for you to go past them.

          • CW

            Well the thing is, and I or someone else brings this up basically every time the “stopping for pedestrians in crosswalks” topic comes up, is that the law is functionally useless because of what I’ll call the “playing chicken” clause. Basically the law says drivers must stop for pedestrians in crosswalks BUT also that pedestrians shouldn’t go into a crosswalk when it isn’t prudent (i.e. a car is coming). So it’s very open ended and basically useless.

          • drax

            No, it’s completely logical and follows the rules of physics.

            A pedestrian must wait to cross until it is safe to do so.

            Once the ped starts crossing, it shouldn’t be a problem for a car since the ped was supposed to wait until it is safe. But if the car must slow down or stop anyway, it must do so, because in a collision, the car will always win.

          • arl2012

            yes. safe to do so does not include a pedestrian in the crosswalk or about to step off the curb when the have the right of way/WALK sign. This sh*t happens daily in Clarendon. Cars turning right –don’t give a sh*t that the pedestrians have the right of way and a legal sign telling them to ‘cross now’.

        • Justice

          That’s right…you’ve got a bus stop and a bike lane too!

          That area seems like a good candidate for few No Right Turn During Red Light PERIOD signs and some enhanced pedestrian crosswalks (with lighting).

          • Arlingtonian

            There are no bus stops or bike lanes at or near the intersection at which the accident occurs. The nearest bus stops are quite far from the intersection. None of the involved or nearby streets have bike lanes.

    • bobco85

      While I agree with you, I don’t think it would be as effective.

      Case in point: There are 2 “No Turn on Red” signs for traffic on the opposite side (coming out of the parking garage) at that intersection, but in my experience passing through that intersection as a cyclist/pedestrian twice a day, only about 2/3 of drivers actually obey them. The signs are relatively new (put up less than 2 months ago, I think), with one being next to the stoplight across the intersection and the other on the sidewalk about 10 feet in front of the intersection. I think people are too used to just looking left to check for oncoming traffic rather than looking straight ahead where they would see the signs.

      The problem with the signs is the lack of enforcement. It’s easier for drivers to just disobey the signs and risk the low chance that a police officer will be there, see them, and pull them over.

      • Undereducated

        Great locations for red light cameras.

    • MallWorker

      They did just add new “No turn on red” signs to the garage exit at that intersection. It should be the same on both sides.

  • prayers for everyone involved.

    Interesting discussion about drivers who speed. On my street, I see lots of cars going well above the speed limit and I worry one of the neighborhood kids will be hit one of these days.

    Recently, I’ve started to try to look at the driver of the speeding car and have discovered that the worse offenders are the parents of the kids who play on the street.

    Totally reckless drivers who also allow their kids to play on the streets and let them cross the streets by foot or bike (unsupervised).

    I just hope we don’t have a squashed kid one of these days!

    Seems to me we are all guilty as pedestrians and drivers – we all need to be careful all the time and just slow down. We are all in a hurry too much of the time and we all get distracted.

  • WeiQiang

    Here’s a challenge … to all of us: Do something about it.

    I understand that folks out of – I hope – common decency and anger are providing words of support for the woman (and other victims) and are lashing out at the driver. There are lots of observations about how bad it is … because it IS bad and getting worse [or if it statistically isn’t getting worse, is still unacceptable]. Pedestrians getting struck. Women being raped.

    So let’s do something about it. After all the women who want to buy guns have done so [after learning how to use them safely] and after ACPD has somehow put some additional resources on the problem, we still have a population of our neighbors and friends that is too numerous for the first two measures to keep safe from determined perps or bad drivers. I’ve asked myself what I can do, so I ride my bike along the W&OD, 4MR and the neighborhood trails instead of crashing about in DC. I’m not absolutely certain it will help, but it will put more eyes in more places where this shiz is happening. Others can walk with their spouses/kids, dogs, whatever.

    As for the cabs, we have a bad problem of cabs, delivery vehicles, and regular drivers running stop signs on streets between Pentagon Row and Arlington Ridge. While I’m out walking my pit bull mix [I had to add that], cabs and delivery cars would blow through the stop signs. I call the pizza place or cab safety supervisor to ask that they do something. No crazy talk; no threats. Just ask. I’ve most often gotten a ‘thank you’ and, most importantly, the driving behavior has changed. At dangerous intersections, maybe we focus on what we’re doing, look out for other pedestrians’ safety, and take action if a commercial vehicle violates the law.

    Having a discussion about rape or a pedestrian getting injured degenerate in to a 2nd Amendment debate or immigration diatribe imo doesn’t do anything to make things better right now … which I think we can do.

    • shellshock868

      Thank you!

      Complaining does nothing. Need action and participation!

    • MB

      Thank you. Sincerely.

  • anonymouse

    The cab drivers in Ballston drive like sh-t and have no regard for pedestrians or others cars sharing the same road. Sadly, this was bound to happen at some point.

    • JamesE

      The cab drivers in the entire DC metro area drive like sh-t and have no regard for pedestrians or others cars sharing the same road. Sadly, this was bound to happen at some point.


      • Aaron

        The drivers in the entire mid-Atlantic region, including transplants, drive like sh-t and have no regard for pedestrians or other cars sharing the same road. Sadly, this was bound to happen somewhere in the area several times a week.


      • kathleen taylor

        totally agree with this. taxi drivers seem to have no regard for pedestrains or other cars on the road.

  • Kmer

    Well as someone who rides Red Top regularly because I don’t see well enough to drive, my experience is that most, not all, of these drivers are working hard to support their families, drive carefully, and are constantly pointing out how reckless drivers are…texting, talking on the phone, eating, makeup. I can’t tell you the number of times I have almost been in an accident in a cab because of the negligence of other drivers. Yes, this cabbie deserves to pay the price, but I am saddened that this accident not only injured a helpless woman, but more than likely will devestate the cabbie’s family as well. Some of these guys, many of whom are imigrants work to put their kids through college by driving a cab. My biggest beef in the county are the croswalks without lights…people are for the most part oblivious to pedestrians trying to cross….even if you are standing in the median. I’ve stood there pushing a double stroller, and even then people don’t stop (at the corner of N. Fairfax and Oakland). And even if someone in one lane stops, the person int he other lane just barrels through with no regard. It is nerve wracking trying to teach my pre-teens that just because one person stops, you can’t be sure another one will. I also let them cross Wilson at Oakland. There is a light there, but I have to constantly remind them, not to trust the walk sign, that they need to make sure everyone has stopped and sees them.

    • ARLwahoo

      Don’t hit people. I don’t care how poor you are. This woman may never be able to work again, will have mounting medical bills, and is at risk of losing her own life. I don’t feel sorry for him at all.

      Also, it seems like every damn cab I’ve been in, both Arlington and DC, the driver is on the phone at least once during the trip. Or they drive at supersonic speed. Especially the ones leaving DC at night going back to Arlington, since they’re missing out on DC fares. It’s ridiculous.

      • drax

        He said the cabbie’s family, not the cabbie.

        • ARLwahoo

          He said he feels bad for the cabbie’s family due to the cabbie’s mistake. While sure, the family will have hardships, but not nearly to the extent the woman probably will. If he wants to provide for his family, he should do his job safely. Just like I don’t run around my office screaming profanities. There’s responsibilities and rules of occupations he should follow.

          • drax

            All of which he also said and we all understood anyway.

      • CW

        Yes, seriously, they’re on the phone 24/7/365; they barely stop whatever they’re talking about for long enough to hear where you want to go (and tell you get out if it’s Arlington in a DC cab).

  • JamesE

    Probably an automatic

    • drax

      For the win.

  • Bella Luna

    I hope the woman recovers.

    Driver’s in Arlington- especially rush hour- are terrible. Some of these animals driving around need to go back to driving school.

  • Emily

    For some reason, this intersection in particular is a very dangerous place. In addition to pedestrians, I have also seen individuals on bikes who have been hit by cars here. I believe a Barnes Dance (pedestrian scramble, also known as diagonal crossing) is the only solution. It is used in Chinatown now, and while, yes, it holds up traffic a bit longer, it is simply necessary. The Carlin apartments are one of the only senior citizen apartment buildings in the area, and we need to protect the elderly in our community. That being said, people of all ages are in danger at this intersection until it is changed. I am in my 20s and very vigilant, and yet I have been nearly struck on several occasions.

    • Undereducated

      This intersection will only get worse when the new multi-residence building goes up on the Goodyear lot.

  • Lotus

    May we all use this horrible incident as a wake up call to both walk and drive with a little more attention & alertness.

  • SeanB

    This is probably the worst intersection in Arlington, but far from the only dangerous one. Drivers are completely oblivious. It’s time to stop treating driving like a right and remind people that it is a privelege. There is almost no enforcement. I walk around Clarendon/Courhouse every day and despite all of the near misses I’ve had and ridiculously dangerous driving I’ve seen, I only see a car pulled over a couple of times a month. Can we increase enforcement?

    We all wonder what to do about a budget defecit here and around the country, how about actually enforcing traffic laws. Fewer people will die and maybe even bring the budget closer to being balanced.

    • Justice

      Wondering the same thing…why not more enforcement at Clarendon/Courthouse? Dury busy periods the pedestrian/vechicle mix approaches NYC levels. The sh*t is getting real.

  • Sewell Truitte

    I think there is bad both ways. I see people crossing against the light all the time. I see them jay walking in between that intersection and N Randolf Street all the time. I also see drivers who don’t pay attention. I even had a woman blow her horn at me because I was waiting for a person to cross while turning right, in the cross walk with the signal. She then yelled at me at the next intersection that she was late because of me. Everyone needs to be careful, drivers and pedestrians. Don’t be so judgmental. It could easily have been any of us making that fatal mistake and either running someone over or being hit because of a second of inattention.

    Be careful out there.

  • Arlingtonian

    Many area residents and Arlington County officials know that the intersection of N. Glebe Road and N. Carlin Springs Road is one of the most hazardous intersections in the entire County. This is just one of many accidents that have occurred at this intersection throughout the years.

    Nevertheless, one month ago, the Arlington County Board approved a site plan for a building at this intersection that lacked an entrance to a previously planned pedestrian bridge over Glebe Road that would have prevented accidents such as this one. Board members discussed this issue, but decided that they preferred to have pedestrians cross the intersection at grade, rather than to support the construction of a bridge that would enable pedestrians to avoid the hazards of crossing the intersection.

    The County Board has approved policies and taken actions to reduce the number of overpasses and underpasses throughout the County. The Board has done this in an effort to force people to use sidewalks and patronize local businesses, even at hazardous intersections.

    This is an example of the many ways that the Arlington County government places higher priorities on economic development than on public safety. Accidents such as this one will continue to occur at this intersection because of the County Board’s policies and decisions.

    • MarceyRd

      I always forget about that bridge. That seems so long ago.

      • Arlingtonian

        Around 1995, the Arlington County government received about one million dollars from the Commonwealth of Virginia to construct the pedestrian bridge. The Ballston Common garage has an entrance for the bridge.

        In 2008, the County Board adopted an amendment to the County’s Master Transportation Plan that discourages the construction of pedestrian bridges, At about the same time, the Board voted to ask the Commonwealth to permit the County to redirect the one million dollars to other transportation projects. The Commonwealth agreed to this request.

        Of course, the Board did not inform the Commonwealth that it had decided to redirect the funds to force pedestrians to cross the intersection so that local retail establishments could increase their profits. But that was the real reason.

    • Suburban Not Urban

      This is so true – the current board’s philosophy is to use poor safety conditions to control vehicle speed and reduce traffic volumes/throughput with things like:.
      1) Poor sitelines at intersections/park all the way to the corner
      2) Narrow streets/parking lanes so that anyone/thing emerging from the sidewalks etc is in the drivers path before they can react.
      3) removing non-grade crossings
      4) in-lane bus stops that create traffic tie-ups and leading to frustrated drivers reacting badly
      5) Un-signaled mid-block crosswalks AKA peds as speed bumps
      6) Removing slip lanes, reducing smooth traffic flow and creating more difficult turns

  • HenryBennetXIII

    Sad story. Old person falling is bad. Falling on pavement is worse.
    I travel extensively and have been in cabs in every major port and these are not our best drivers professionals.
    BUT yellow cab Arlington/Alexandria and falls church are by far the worst drivers on the road.

  • Mick

    I cross this intersection several times every day and I have actually been touched by cars on three occasions during the last year. (I was not hurt, but I am not too happy about it either.)

    Even so, I don’t blame the drivers. This is a terrible intersection and there is only one fix.

    Sadly, even though the fix would be easy, and even though it
    would actually move car traffic faster, while making it very safe for those of us who walk, it will not be done because the Government doesn’t want any part of “All walk in all directions”. (And no walkers in the way when the cars have
    green lights.)

    If all the walkers walked at one time, (With no cars allowed to move while they walked.), you wouldn’t have the cars being forced to go around the walkers. When the cars went, the walkers would wait.

    This is one of a very few intersections where this would work far better than the way it is now.

    Nearly every resident of the Carlin has had close calls at this
    intersection. (The Carlin is a Senior Building that has some blind residents who walk across this intersection.)

    I do not blame the Cab Driver. This is a very tough intersection and the government will not use good judgement so the blame belongs to the government!!

    • Arlingtonian

      The County’s transportation planners have stated that they do not want an “All Walk” intersection at this location because it would increase the time that motor vehicles would need to wait for the traffic signals to change. The planners believe that this would increase the number of vehicles that run the red lights, and would actually worsen pedestrian safety. They are probably correct.

      • Erick

        As it is, the green light for cars coming from Carlin Springs is almost entirely wasted in the morning. Maybe 1/5 of the time its green cars can actually make the left, the rest they wait for pedestrians. The line backs up a quarter mile down the road sometimes. You could take almost the entirety of that green and turn it into an “All Walk” and you wouldn’t really cut down on the amount of time they have. Take some time from the other lights as well, and you could have a lot of walking time without losing much effective time.

        I know that long queue of cars down Carlin makes people crazy and causes them to get too close to pedestrians, stay out in the intersection after losing the green, and speed down the right turn late once they finally clear the one lane portion of Carlin.

        I think I’ve had the majority of my close calls with cars going south on Glebe turning right on Carlin. They hardly ever seem to look and are happy to turn right through the red without even stopping, even when pedestrians are standing on the corner clearly getting ready to walk across.

        Here’s the simple solution that could fix so many of our traffic problems. Stop giving a license to every idiot who wants one. Won’t happen though. Idiots are a powerful interest group.

      • Clarendon

        Glebe is a state road also so VDOT would have to approve I assume.

        • Neutrino

          VDOT – Where everything has two answers: faster speed limits and more lanes.

  • samuel

    please don’t make a full judgement about all Arlington taxi cabs are bad driver’s. they have all responsibility like others. accident can happen in any circumstance whether you are cab driver or any ……it is better to avoid in any way.

    RIP for the person who is dead.


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