Man in wheelchair hit by car, sidewalk was too icy to travel on

A man in a wheelchair was hit in the street Saturday morning after he was forced to travel in the roadway of the Southfield Service Drive as the sidewalks were still too packed with snow. The man is in the hospital fighting to survive. 

The driver, who was behind the wheel with a suspended license.

Those who know the victim believe the accident could have been prevented, and the city is working to make the sidewalks more accessible. 

"I received a call saying he was hit and he was in street. ... [S]eniors have to walk up and down here. I took a picture, because when I got here I was ... very concerned about the snow not being done," says a friend who didn't wish to be identified.

The victim is said to live at Greenhouse Apartments. FOX 2 talked to some residents there who say they have difficulties walking on the sidewalk near the complex.

"People with wheelchairs, walkers, canes, they have a hard time getting down sidewalk. I have a hard time getting down there myself," says Linda Dozier, a neighbor. "There's danger to walk on snow and ice as well as it is to walk on streets. So they have no other result but to take one of the dangerous choices of walking on ice or getting hit by a car."

After calls to city officials, crews came out to clear away the snow and ice, although some in the area argue this should have been done sooner. 

In a statement to FOX 2, though city officials say under city ordinance, it is the responsibility of property owners to clear sidewalks that border their property, including ones that border the rear of their property. With the large amount of snow that fell recently, it is even more important for residents and businesses to make sure their walks are cleared in the interest of pedestrian safety.

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