CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A scary incident at an unusual intersection on Charleston's West Side spurred a city councilman into action this week.
A boy was riding a bicycle behind his sister on an electric scooter Tuesday evening when they darted across Virginia Street in the Five Corners intersection. Witnesses said neither child looked before crossing the busy street.
The girl made it across unscathed, but the boy ran into the side of a Buick Riviera. He was taken to a Charleston hospital with non life-threatening injuries, but family members said he was bruised and in pain.
The incident led residents and business owners to call for better safety precautions like crosswalks or pedestrian lights.
Councilman Ed Talkington, a Democrat who represents that area, said he called the city's traffic engineering department Wednesday morning after reading news reports of the incident. He said he wants engineers to review the intersection and recommend ways to improve safety there.
He said the intersection is unique in Charleston.
"It's kind of an odd intersection," he said Wednesday afternoon. "It's probably the only one like it in Charleston."
The spot is where two-way Virginia Street and Central and Delaware avenues meet one-way eastbound Virginia Street, which continues through downtown and the East End.
Talkington said no one has ever brought up the need for crosswalks or better traffic signals in that location to him.
"I don't think it would hurt to have (a traffic engineer) review it," he said.
Calls to the traffic engineer's office, which falls under the city's Public Works Department, were referred to Mayor Danny Jones.
Jones said the intersection is tricky and has been since he was a boy, although there was more traffic at the time.
"I don't think any of that would have precluded what happened," Jones said of the boy's injuries when asked about crosswalks and traffic lights. "But we're looking at that."
The driver, who was not identified, initially left the scene but returned minutes later. He was not charged. The man swerved to avoid the girl but could not have avoided the boy, police Lt. Mark Abbott said Tuesday night.