Student hit by car on Main Street

A UW-Whitewater student was struck by a car at the intersection of Main Street and Whiton Street Tuesday afternoon.

Senior Chris ONeil said he was crossing Main Street at the Whiton Street crosswalk when he was “nudged” by the vehicle.

“The car came up [and] sort of nudged me,” he said.  “I sort of had to lean up against his hood.”

ONeil said the driver got out of his vehicle to make sure he was okay.

“I said yeah, no scratches or dents,” he said.  “I didn’t feel the need to get his name or make any big deal out of it so we went our separate ways.”

He said he pressed the button for the overhead pedestrian signals but the vehicle did not stop in time.

ONeil said other than putting in a stop light at the intersection, he doesn’t feel there is much more the city can do to prevent incidents like this.

“They’ve made significant attempts to make it safe while I’ve been here,” ONeil said.

ONeil said he’s fine and doesn’t feel the need to follow up any further on the accident.

Whitewater City Manager Kevin Brunner said the city plans to put in traffic lights at the intersection to improve pedestrian safety on Main Street.

“I wish it could be done sooner but we’ve got some federal funds we’re waiting on,” Brunner said.

Whitewater Director of Public Works Dean Fischer said it has not been easy to stop these incidents.

“It’s been a frustrating with Whiton Street trying to get a traffic signal up there,” Fischer said.

Fischer said the city was originally going to fund it as a city project, costing approximately $150,000, before he found a grant that would pay for it.

The Highway Safety Improvement Grant would pay approximately 80 percent of the project though extra requirements would likely increase the cost to $200,000.

“I’m on the bubble of getting that built yet this year,” Fischer said.  “When you start using state money you have to go through all this red tape and that’s the hassle with federal money sometimes.”

Fischer said they hope to have traffic signals up by late September or early October.

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