Pedestrian Arrogance in Vancouver

I was listening to Bill Good on CKNW this morning. He was taking calls from people on the topic of pedestrians and their inability to appreciate the fact that any car or truck on the road has the “right-of-weight” when it comes to pedestrian-vehicle interactions.

And for the first time in a long time, I actually found myself agreeing with Bill Good and his callers. Far too many times I have seen pedestrians step off the sidewalk and begin crossing the street without even a quick glance to the side to see if the truck bearing down on them is going to stop.

The other day I was waiting for another car to finish backing out of a parking spot when I noticed two teenage girls walking down the middle of the parking lot, even though there are plenty of sidewalks in that particular mall. The car came close (at a crawl) to the girls and they stopped walking and their texting long enough to scream obscenities at the driver of the car and flip the driver the bird.

How is it that in Vancouver the pedestrian is the king or queen of the road? Nobody wants to hit a pedestrian and yet it seems like the pedestrians are asking to be hit on a daily basis. What gives?


  1. My theory is that there is a Pedestrian/Patty Pivot Point (or P4 if you like) which states: The presumptuousness of the pedestrian (2P) will increase linearly until it intersects with the declining line of the benevolence of new drivers (B-New), at which point you reach the Pedestrian/Patty Pivot Point (P4) wherein a pedestrian is converted to a patty. Only then will behavior change.

    You see, when 2P and B-New come together, all hell breaks loose.

  2. We are one of the FEW places where pedestrians do legally have the right-of-way. There does seem to be a sense of entitlement, BUT from a police/legal standpoint, the ‘law’ is flexible and if you are an idiot, you’ll get treated like an idiot!

  3. Having enjoyed walking about New York City last summer, I can say Vancouver pedestrians aren’t even in the game! Although, it appears a few have been taking lessons from New Yorkers.

    And, don’t get me wrong, the NYC pedestrian may be walking into the path of speeding vehicle on a regular basis and the vehicles may be adroitly avoiding the pedestrians but if I’d been the driver getting the bird from those Vancouver teenagers … well, let’s just say, parts of them (about 8 inches wide) would be flat.

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