Douglas Street in downtown Victoria is busy, wet, and miserable during rush hour. That’s exactly where a pedestrian was struck by a vehicle, one of two such incidents before 8 a.m. Tuesday morning. Right now, there is no word yet on the extent of injuries.

On Monday, a vehicle struck a young girl in the marked crosswalk near Kenneth Street, just north of McKenzie in Saanich. Police are still searching for the driver.

These are the most dangerous days of the year for these pedestrians.

“I was just about hit this morning, actually. Just coming out of the coffee shop, in the crosswalk. the car stopped coming down, coming up didn’t stop. Guy just barreled right on through,” said one pedestrian.

“I had seen one of my friends on Quadra Street get hit,” said another.

“I have a reflector here and I’d like you to wear it so that you can be seen by drivers walking in downtown Sidney,” said a biker.

Between October and January on Vancouver Island, ICBC estimates an average of 370 crashes involve a pedestrian.

And in the wake of these three pedestrian-related crashes in Greater Victoria, police are urging drivers to use extra caution this time of year.

“Be aware that pedestrians are dressing in darker clothing, and it’s getting darker earlier and earlier. Just take that extra second. have another look. Make sure that the crosswalks are clear. Make sure that somebody hasn’t walked out in front of you before you make that turn,” said RCMP Cpl. Chris Manseau.

Drivers and pedestrians both recognize it’s everyone’s responsibility to take care.

“I’ve almost hit pedestrians because they just walk. People are not watching. They are busy doing this. I don’t know if it’s drivers fault or pedestrian. But I watch for both,” said one driver.

“Definitely, you have to be aware of your surroundings where everyone is. And downtown is very busy, all the time,” said another passerby.

Even though as a pedestrian you may have the right of way, police say, never assume the drivers see you. Particularly, at this time of year.

Mary Griffin