A man hit by a car in Hutchinson Sunday dies. Now, people nearby say they want changes where it happened
There was a traffic light at Avenue A and Poplar in Hutch but it was taken out last year.
77-year-old Neil Kralicek was hit by a car as he was crossing the intersection at East Avenue A and Poplar street Sunday. He died a day later.
Rick Greathouse says he's the driver's boyfriend. He and his girlfriend have been calling the hospital to check on the man.
"She didn't...I mean what can you say? She hit a person, it shook her up, but after you get into the accident, there's not a whole lot you can do, you just gotta wait," says Kralicek.
A nearby business owner says there have been more accidents since the city took down the traffic lights.
"Since then we've had several wrecks, one death and of course the man getting hit the other night," says Charles Wheeler, owner of R-B Drive In.
His restaurant R-B sits right on Poplar. He has a good view of the crosswalk.
"Near accidents probably 2 or 3 a day and accidents, it might only be 1 every 2 weeks," he says describing how often accidents occur.
City council member Cindy Proett says the city conducted several traffic studies that showed no light was needed at the intersection. Crews removed it last year.
"I know we had accidents at that intersection when there was a light, we've had accidents at that intersection since removing that light. It's not always determined though the light would've been the determining factor in that situation," says Proett.
After every crash, the City takes another look at the intersection. Friends of Kralicek's hope something is done before another person dies.
"He's just kind of an older gentleman that gets around kind of slow and I think if the lights had been there, it might've prohibited him from getting injured," says Cherryl Bentley of R-B Drive In.
The driver told police the sun was in her eyes and she didn't see the man.
Hutchinson police say they're still investigating and want to hear from anyone who may have seen what happened.