CAMBRIDGE – The dangers of being a pedestrian in Cambridge's Harvard Square were in full view yesterday after news broke that a large crane truck hit a woman who was crossing the street early in the morning.

Per the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office, a woman said to be in her sixties was crossing Brattle Street in Harvard Square when she was hit by the truck and, tragically, the accident proved to be fatal. She died of her injuries after being transported to the hospital.

Just before seven o'clock in the morning yesterday, police were called to the center of Harvard Square where the woman was suffering from serious injuries outside of the Out of Town News stand in the plaza. As for the truck, it was later identified to be a massive Waltham Lumber vehicle that was transporting sheetrock at the time. Per the officials, the truck driver has not been charged, and witnesses reported that the woman crossed the street without using a crosswalk.

The driver did not realize he'd hit her until witnesses flagged him down. He remained at the scene, according to the Cambridge Police Department, but for a good majority of the day, the intersection at Harvard Square was closed down. Traffic proceeded as normal once again after two o'clock in the afternoon.

Per the DA's office, the woman's name was not originally released while the family was notified, but her name is now known. She has been identified as Sharon Hamer, a retired librarian.

State officials could definitely find ways to improve traffic flow in Harvard Square so this does not happen again. Between the lights in Harvard Square not often being in sync with one another and permitting two intersecting lanes of traffic, both vehicular and foot, to cross at the same time and the overall dangerous middle of the passageway, Harvard Square is definitely not as safe as it could be. A few tweaks could help save lives in the future and it should definitely be something that Cambridge officials pursue further after this tragic incident.


Image via Flickr / David Wilson