WESTERLY — A local man was treated at Westerly Hospital on Monday after he was struck in the crosswalk serving the Granite Street Shopping Center, a crossing the police described as unsafe.
The man, Ethan Davies, 20, of Summer Street, suffered several minor injuries after he was hit by a vehicle in the southbound passing lane at about 4:30 p.m. He was treated at the scene by personnel with Westerly Ambulance and was taken to Westerly Hospital.
Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey said the injuries were not life threatening and that Davies was released from the hospital later Monday night.
"This is just the latest in a number of accidents we've had at that location over the past several years. It's a dangerous location and we urge anyone driving or walking in that area to be careful and pay attention," Lacey said.
According to police reports, Davies was trying to cross from the shopping center to a sidewalk on the west side of the street. A driver who had recently turned onto Route 1 / Granite Street stopped in the right southbound travel lane to allow him to pass.
The police said that as he was crossing, a New London resident, Jamie Porretta, 28, was driving in the left lane and was unable to stop, striking Davies and knocking him to the ground. He was quickly assisted by police Capt. Steven Johnson, who came upon the accident just moments after Davies was struck and while he was still lying in the roadway.
The police said there was no evidence of speeding, but Porretta was cited with failure to yield right of way to a pedestrian.
Lacey said the incident points to an ongoing problem at the location, and that the department would seek assistance from the town and state to better address the safety issues at the crosswalk. The goal would be to identify options such as a flashing light to enhance the crosswalk's visibility, he said.
"There is no intersection there and no dedicated turn. The crosswalk is marked and painted but it's a 35 mph zone and by the time many drivers acknowledge it, it is already too late," Lacey said. "We are looking at options and will consider will seek anything cost-effective that could potentially make things safer."