Local News

Spokane couple looks to improve pedestrian safety downtown

SPOKANE, Wash. - A Spokane couple who were both involved in auto-pedestrian accidents, are looking to make changes in Spokane's downtown core.

Douglas McCoy was hit by a truck while crossing an intersection on Wednesday.

His wife, Amy McCoy, was also hit by a car downtown just two years ago.

This couple is upset, and they say more needs to be done to ensure pedestrian safety.

First, drivers and pedestrians need to pay more attention, and second, the City of Spokane needs to help make the growing downtown more pedestrian-friendly.

House of POp owner Douglas McCoy was on his lunch break when he got hit.

"It said walk, I got halfway across the intersection," McCoy explained. "I remember seeing the car stopped on Riverside heading west at the light...I looked over, and it was the hood of a truck and it hit me."

Douglas suffered bruising and muscle damage, but he will be okay.

"I took on a truck and didn't break anything, so I'm very, very happy about that," he said.

When she got the call, Douglas' wife and co-owner of House of POp Amy couldn't believe it.

"Immediately I thought I was being punked," she said. "I'm like, this cannot be happening."

That's because this has happened to her at Sprague and Post two years ago.

"I saw the driver coming and I'm like, oh he'll stop," she remembered, "and I tried to make myself visible and I'm like, he'll stop, he'll stop, he'll stop, and there was that second when I was like, he's not stopping, and I went down."

Amy broke her leg and was bed ridden for months.

"When two people in the same household within two years both get hit by cars, come on!" Douglas said.

Douglas and Amy say downtown can be dangerous for pedestrians and something needs to change.

"I'm mad at him for hitting me, absolutely mad at the guy who hit my wife," Douglas said, "but I'm also mad at situations that contribute to this situation."

They say as Spokane continues to develop, and more people are living and working in downtown, the City of Spokane should do more, like installing green turn arrow lights at intersections.

"We've got new construction that are going to put more people downtown and if the residents of this city and the city itself does not get on this, it's going to be a huge problem," Douglas said.

The McCoys are pleading with drivers to pay attention when you're making turns in downtown. You never know who will be crossing the street.

"We encourage you to come downtown, but when you do come down, pay attention, people live down here and work down here," he said.

The City of Spokane tells KXLY in order to make changes to intersections, the city does traffic studies and reviews the number of accidents and incidents. Changes are made when a specific need or condition is identified.

The City of Spokane recently changed a section of Main Avenue to include back in angle parking. The City says goals of that project were in part to improve pedestrian mobility and slow down traffic.

That project is a part of a pilot program, and the City is collecting data and monitoring if that type of change would be applicable to different areas of the city.