Don’t try this on a public street

Professional driver. Do not attempt.

On some television commercials involving a passenger car or truck engaged in dramatic driving or stunt maneuvers, there is typically a disclaimer on the screen that notes something along the lines of "Professional driver. Do not attempt." A Virginia man driving a pickup truck in Ocean City, Maryland demonstrated why these disclaimers exist.

The driver was arrested and charged with driving under the influence (DUI), and a breath test showed a BAC of 0.20, more than twice the legal limit in Maryland. He apparently attempted to make a U-turn by first accelerating to the point where his wheels were spinning, then lost control of the vehicle, and crashed into a pedestrian standing on a nearby sidewalk.

DUI Led To Hit And Run

After he struck and injured the pedestrian, he then drove south in the northbound lane of the street and fled the scene, in spite of witnesses yelling at him stop. The pedestrian's injuries were not described but they were apparently not life-threatening. Nevertheless, the pickup broke parts of its taillight during the knockdown, and those parts were later used by police to positively identify the pickup.

Pedestrian Fatalities Growing

The pedestrian was lucky.

In recent years, pedestrian fatalities have been growing. As we noted last week, traffic fatalities in the U.S. increased sharply last year.

As part of that increase, more pedestrians and bicyclist died as a result of crashes with motor vehicles. Increases have been seen in the last few years, but last year was worse than typical, with an increase of 12 percent for bike riders. The news for pedestrians was almost as bad, with fatalities increasing to 5,376, which was up 9.5 percent.

As a pedestrian, it is always a good idea to consider all moving vehicles as dangerous and never trust that a driver will give you the right of way. And as the disclaimer states, Do not attempt.