AMHERST, NY (WIVB)- - A Tonawanda man is lucky to be alive after being struck by a car while trying to cross Niagara Falls Boulevard in Amherst. By the looks of the hole in the windshield of this Honda and the dent on the hood, it;s hard to believe that the injuries were actually not life threatening for 31 year old Karl Booker of Tonawanda.
"Right now the victim is conscious and alert at ECMC.," said Captain Kevin Brown of the Amherst Police Department."There does not appear to be life threatening injuries."
Booker was trying to cross Niagara Falls Boulevard in the dark on Monday morning at at 6:25 am. He chose to cross about 150 feet south of a crosswalk at Creekside Drive. "The message to pedestrians is obviously try to cross at the intersections where there are crosswalks at the intersection where there are crosswalks with the cross lights," said Captain Brown. "Those are where the drivers expect to see pedestrians, they don't expect to see pedestrians in the middle of the block or median or anything like that."
Town of Amherst Supervisor Brian Kulpa notes that the car which struck Booker was traveling at 20 miles per hour or less according to investigators. Kulpa believes that's why Booker survived. "Pedestrians have a far greater survival rate in an accident the slower the vehicle is moving. If the vehicle is moving at 20 miles per hour it's tremendous. If it's moving 30 miles per hour it''s good. If it's moving over 40 miles per hour it's not good at all."
Kulpa would like to see the speed limit lowered from 45 MPH to 30 MPH for that very reason. He and other lawmakers have been trying to get the New York State Department of Transportation to make changes that could make lower the number of pedestrian accidents along the Boulevard. Since 2013, there have been six fatalities in the six mile stretch of Niagara Falls Boulevard from the City of Buffalo line to the Niagara County line.