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Posted on Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 11:18 a.m.

Ann Arbor police release name of pedestrian killed on Ann Arbor-Saline Road Thursday

By Kyle Feldscher

Ann Arbor police have released more information on the crash that killed a 70-year-old city resident as she walked across Ann Arbor-Saline Road at Oakbrook Drive Friday evening.

Sgt. Bill Clock said Menghua Tian, of Ann Arbor, was killed while crossing from the west side of Ann Arbor-Saline Road to the east. She was struck by a pickup truck heading north on Ann Arbor-Saline Road, Clock said.


A pedestrian crosses Ann Arbor Saline Road at Oakbrook Drive Monday.

Daniel Brenner |

Tian was wearing dark clothing at the time of her death and was not in an area with a crosswalk, Clock said. There were no reflective items on her clothing.

“It was so dark when we got there, I think I got there at about 6:30 p.m.,” Clock said. “It was just horrible.”

Tian’s death has raised concerns among residents about the possible need for a pedestrian crosswalk at the intersection of Ann Arbor-Saline Road and Oakbrook Drive. Officials within the city government said Tuesday they are considering various safety solutions in the area.

While the crash report isn’t finished yet, Clock said investigators will turn the case over to Washtenaw County prosecutors, who will then decide whether to charge the Horton man who was driving the pickup.

Clock said there are no speed estimates available yet and tests are still being done on the pickup. However, it doesn’t appear the man was speeding at the time of the crash.

“All witnesses said he was moving at the posted speed,” Clock said.

Clock said the vehicle had crested the hill near the Cranbrook Plaza shopping center and would have been visible to Tian when she was crossing.

The crash that killed Tian was the third in two days that ended with a fatality. Nineteen-year-old Yeltsin Gonzalez died Saturday from injuries he suffered in a crash Thursday morning on Hewitt Road in Ypsilanti Township, and Michele Ann LaDuke, 59 of Ypsilanti Township, died Thursday evening after being struck by a car on Golfside Drive in Pittsfield Township.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 5:35 p.m.

yes lights should be included. they also should be installed on the ones that are done and have no lights. making the useless.

Seasoned Cit

Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 5:21 p.m.

An observation missing in the discussion re: need for crosswalk in the area is: AATA buses southbound on A2Saline Rd turn east on Oakbrook and return the same way. Thus all bus riders living on the west side of A2Saline Rd, must cross A2Saline to get to the bus stops on Oakbrook.


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 3:08 p.m.

I feel badly for the driver, he/she will never get over this. As a resident of that area and someone who walks every morning before sunrise, I want to mention that it would great to have street lights on that stretch of A2-Saline. When I walk in the mornings I wear a headlamp so that I can see where I'm walking, it gets that dark along certain stretches. A little more illumination may have made Ms. Tian a bit more visible and given the driver more time to stop. On the other hand, traffic moves very fast through that stretch and people who cross must know that they are taking risks. Not sure how a crosswalk is going to help.


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 1:56 p.m.

Tian was wearing dark clothing at the time of her death and was not in an area with a crosswalk, Clock said. There were no reflective items on her clothing. Along with no lightning I don't see how the driver would be held liable, unless he was distracted, speeding or driving under the influence case closed.


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 12:53 p.m.

There is a pass through the neighborhood across from where she was crossing and many, many people do their evening and morning walks on that route. They cross the main road there because it is a lengthy walk to go to the stop light near the corner by Bushes at Ann Arbor Saline & that small Main St. The place where she was struck should have a crosswalk and/or signal of some sort. May she rest in peace.


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 10:59 a.m.

"It was so dark when we got there, I think I got there at about 6:30 p.m.," Clock said. "It was just horrible." $ Cost for a 10' streetlight 1k-2k big cobra-style lamp pole 15k center pedestrian island 30k A2 painted crosswalk with curbcuts - $ ask the city painted crosswalk compliance 22% (FHWA study) two sign solar powered RRFB 16.5k up to 80% compiance with known rear end collisions four sign RRFB 33k 84% compliance over the road mounted version 100k HAWK system 150k 90% compliance Stoplight 150k - requires warrant analysis by traffic engineer to justify installation - rarely met The single largest contributor towards aggressive driving behavior - traffic congestion

Lynn Glazewski

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 10:25 p.m.

I live off Plymouth Rd and the new crosswalk alerts are very effective. They are bright yellow, are impossible to ignore, and are triggered whenever a pedestrian hits the button, and go off as soon as the person is across. Everyone stops, you can see them so far out that there are no surprise pile-ups, and they don't take nearly as long as a red light. Sounds as if AA-Saline Rd needs a few of those.


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 4:22 a.m.

Yes they are VERY effective but ONLY IF drivers are educated as to what they are. Several times I've witnessed people go right through them not knowing they need to STOP. Especially in early fall when the students arrive. Out of towners might not know the laws. I, personally, think the one on Huron near Lurie Terrace is the best one. (Yellow flash turns to red flash then to solid red.) Too many people associate yellow with "slow down" only, and only red with "stop".


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 2:18 a.m.

We need to get the HAWK system up in more of the cross walks that are already installed, and we need to put a HAWK crosswalk in or a traffic light in at Oakbrook. At minimum, some street lights so it's not completely dark in that area anymore.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 9:11 p.m.

I live near there, the street is a major thoroughfare at that point with 5 lanes of traffic. By 6:30pm it was pitch dark. We teach our children to cross the street only at the streetlight, sounds like we need to teach our 70 year old grandparents to cross the street only at the streetlight, particularly when it is dark and they want to cross 5 lanes of traffic on a major thoroughfare. . . . I agree with Billy that charges against the driver of the vehicle shouldn't even be remotely possible at this point.

Albert Howard

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 6:21 p.m.

Our thoughts and prayers to the family of Menghua Tian.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 8:15 p.m.

Yes, I agree.

Katherine Griswold

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 5:31 p.m.

We need to remove politics from transportation safety before we have more deaths and injuries. Transportation engineering is based on designing infrastructure to encourage the desired behavior, not the current political gamesmanship. Ann Arbor does not have the infrastructure for the current pedestrian crosswalk ordinance. We have been funding questionable transportation planning projects (trains, monorails, county bus system) while neglecting to adequately fund critical infrastructure projects.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 5:02 p.m.

Speaking of which, any word on the man found dead in the rolled-over SUV off of Plymouth?


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 5:02 p.m.

I'm not sure why they're even still considering charges in this case.....charges shouldn't even be remotely possible at this point....

Frustrated in A2

Sun, Nov 18, 2012 : 2:09 a.m.

My apologies, I was not trying to take away from the fact that the pedestrian did not contribute to this crash (there are obviously several things the pedestrian could've done differently). However both sides have to be looked at as far what could've been done differently and how could the crash have been avoided. As Grimmk stated its possible that its a 50/50 thing.


Thu, Nov 15, 2012 : 5:17 a.m.

Frustrated - The driver didn't see the pedestrian because A) there are no lights B) it was night C) the pedestrian was wearing dark clothes D) no reflective clothing and C) NOT IN A CROSS WALK It is never stated that the driver was distracted. He wasn't texting or on the phone. Sometimes an accident is just that, an accident. The legality is not all on the driver. At best it is 50-50 with the driver and the pedestrian. The pedestrian didn't do their due diligence and paid the price.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 9:01 p.m.

"you have to ask why the driver didn't see the pedestrian" I think the Sgt. pretty much explained it?

Frustrated in A2

Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 8:41 p.m.

Driver's have the legal responsibility to avoid a traffic crash, just because the driver may not have been speeding doesn't mean that he's not at fault in anyway. You have to ask why the driver didn't see the pedestrian, was he texting or distracted in anyway. Some times in cases like this the driver and pedestrian may do something that would contribute to the crash happening. That's why a complete and through investigation is done and turned over to the prosecutor for review. A review doesn't guarantee charges it just means its going to be looked over to see if charges should or would be brought up.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 5:52 p.m.

In any death that is a homocide the investigation is always turned over to the prosecutors to review. Doesn't mean they are considering charges.


Wed, Nov 14, 2012 : 4:47 p.m.

look twice before crossing...and KEEP looking WHILE crossing.