Matt Petti doesn’t remember the moment a car struck him as he tried to cross Belmont Street in Brockton nearly a decade ago. When he woke up from a coma in a Boston hospital nine days later, Petti recalled last week, he didn’t realize he was married and had a daughter. He suffered a serious head injury, and he said he’s had several seizures since the Dec. 26, 2000, accident

Matt Petti doesn’t remember the moment a car struck him as he tried to cross Belmont Street in Brockton nearly a decade ago.

When he woke up from a coma in a Boston hospital nine days later, Petti recalled last week, he didn’t realize he was married and had a daughter.

He suffered a serious head injury, and he said he’s had several seizures since the Dec. 26, 2000, accident that occurred in front of Petti’s Market on Belmont Street, which he owns and operates.

He said his large family, including his wife, Kathy, 40, and daughter, Nicole, 11, helped him pull through his harrowing ordeal.

“People need to pay more attention while they’re driving, and just be aware, because you never know, you can affect someone’s life,” Petti, now 43, said.

It’s clear, motorists aren’t — even when pedestrians are in a crosswalk.

A recent investigation found several motorists showed little concern when people tried to cross the road.

From a convenience store crosswalk in Raynham to a middle school in Whitman to the scene of a fatal pedestrian crash in Brockton in March, motorists aren’t stopping, The Enterprise found.

The Enterprise watched as several pedestrians tried to cross in crosswalks. Many experienced long waits to cross as cars zoomed by.

“We try to cross. It’s like, we almost got hit a couple of times, too,” said Brockton mother Mary Bergeron as she tried to carefully cross East Ashland Street in Brockton with her daughters, Selina, 8, and Melissa, 6, on a recent afternoon.

A pedestrian is killed in a traffic crash across the country every 107 minutes. One is injured every seven minutes, according to federal data.

Most pedestrian fatalities happen between 6 and 9 p.m. and on weekends. And the most deadly season for pedestrian fatalities is autumn.

More get hurt

The region has seen an upswing in pedestrian crashes, most recently in Stoughton and Abington.

On June 13, Diya Patel, 4, was struck and killed by an 88-year-old Canton driver in the crosswalk as she and her family tried to cross Route 138 in Stoughton, police said.

On Wednesday in Abington, 5-year-old Brandy Rix was struck by a van and seriously injured as she tried to cross an intersection in a crosswalk with her family.

Patel’s death has put the spotlight — yet again — on legislative efforts to retest elderly drivers.

“It’s only a problem that’s getting worse,” said state Sen. Brian Joyce, D-Milton, who reintroduced legislation requiring all drivers older than 85 to pass a vision and road test every five years to renew a driver’s license.

But pedestrian accidents have also involved younger drivers.

The driver of the van that struck the girl in Abington was Nicole Barros, 28, of Brockton, police said.

And the motorist who struck Petti, Jessica Cushing of Brockton, was 28 at the time of the accident and was not charged, said Mark Petti, Matt’s twin brother, a Brockton attorney who has represented several pedestrians who have been hit by cars and buses.

The pedestrian accidents across the region have people worried for their safety.

Eileen Gliniewicz lives across the street from the Abington intersection where that crash took place.

“They won’t stop, even if you’re in the crosswalk, they just fly right by,” Gliniewicz said.

For Bergeron, of Brockton, crossing the street with her young daughters can be a risky proposition.

“It’s just not safe at all,” Bergeron said. Motorists “just keep on going.”

Testing streets

So how safe is it to cross local streets?

The Enterprise traveled to Abington, Stoughton, West Bridgewater, Raynham, Whitman and Brockton — specifically North Main Street in Brockton, where 3-year-old Christopher Mitchell was killed on March 31 — to see how drivers react to pedestrians.

The Enterprise witnessed several drivers zoom by as a reporter tried to cross North Main Street in Brockton.

In Raynham, a group of youths tried to cross in front of Coletti’s Market on North Main Street.

While one car stopped for the youths, another car sped by the youths as they approached the middle of the crosswalk.

“Sometimes (motorists) stop, but we just make them stop” by walking out into the crosswalk, said Steven Wentworth, 15.

One motorist stopped for Brian Burns of Taunton to cross the street after he shopped at Coletti’s Market.

“Some are reluctant to stop,” Burns, 53, said of motorists. “Usually, if one person initiates it, then the other side will stop. But other than that, you’re on your own, I guess.”

Pedestrians need to be “in charge” when crossing a street, said Iris Oden, 68, of Brockton, as she walked with her grandson, Jason, on North Main Street in Brockton recently.

“If you cross at the lights you feel safe,” Oden said. “But if you want to cross in the middle of the street, it’s up to you to make sure you’re safe. Cars ... they don’t stop on a dime.”

Pedestrians in a crosswalk have the right of way by state law, and failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk can result in a traffic citation, a fine of up to $200, or more serious consequences if someone is injured.

“You could lose your license,” Easton police officer George Allen Allen said. “You could end up in jail.”

Maria Papadopoulos can be reached at mpapadopoulos@enterprisenews.com.

Several serious pedestrian crashes have occurred in the area:

- On June 17: In Abington, 5-year-old Brandy Rix was struck by a van and seriously injured in a crosswalk as she tried to cross an intersection with her family.

- On June 13: In Stoughton, 4-year-old Diya Patel of Stoughton was struck and killed by an 88-year-old Canton driver in the crosswalk as she and her family tried to cross Route 138.

- On May 19: In Brockton, a van struck and injured a Brockton woman who was seven months pregnant as she tried to cross Brookside Avenue. The woman and her unborn baby survived.

- On April 12: In Easton, a minivan driven by an elderly man struck and seriously injured a married Easton couple as they walked their dog on Sheridan Street on Easter morning.

- On April 6: A 60-year-old Brockton woman was seriously injured after a car struck her and pushed her underneath another vehicle in the Price Rite parking lot in Brockton.

- On March 31: In Brockton, a 3-year-old Brockton boy died after he and his family were struck by a minivan as they tried to cross North Main Street. His mother and sister were seriously injured in the crash.

- In July 2008: James McGrath, 49, of Whitman, was struck and killed by an SUV as he crossed South Avenue in Whitman in front of his business, Suburban Service Center.

- In February 2008: Claudette Joseph, 54, of Brockton, was struck by a car and killed while walking her dog on Warren Avenue in Brockton.

- In December 2007: A school bus struck and killed Lisa J. Herlihy, 46, a Brockton resident who was using a walker to cross Belmont Street in Brockton at the time of the crash.

Pedestrian fatalities have declined in recent years

Massachusetts: In 2006, 61 pedestrians were killed in Massachusetts, down from 86 in 2003.   Nationally: In 2007, 4,654 pedestrian deaths occurred, down 38 percent from 1975.   Sources: Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration