So I live in Massachusetts, and I like to walk every day. I have discovered that the most dangerous time of the year to walk is on bright summer or spring days in the middle of a cross walk. I had three memorable incidents last year, and so far this year (after the melting at least 32 inch tall snow banks) one car's sudden stop resulted in a car behind it having the swerve into oncoming traffic, which at the time wasn't oncoming because the drivers stopped for me.
I practice basic road safety and etiquette, I stop before entering the side walk, look both way, wait for cars that are going to pass even though legally they have to stop. What I want to know are appropriate gesture that I can give after they have stopped suddenly or what I should yell as they are skidding to a stop (and assuming they car hear me because there windows are open because of the warmth)?
Since this is regional I think it depends on where you are. In Cambridge everyone slams on their brakes to top for people in crosswalks. Not all crosswalks are near lights and it makes it impossible to get down some streets as you stop at the whim of every person who wants to use a crosswalk. However, I know of no other town in MA that is as rigid as Cambridge. Cars should stop, but honestly I don't always see people on the side of the road. If you're at a light I assume you're going to wait for the light to change and walk with the signs as I do. If it's in the middle of a road I'm looking at what is on the road, not the side of the road.
Driving a car is more complicated than people think and for some people it is all they can do to concentrate on other cars. Please don't yell at cars. You never know who is crazy.
Next door to Cambridge, in Arlington, there is a popular bike path, that is used year-round by cyclists, joggers, walkers and parents taking babies out for an airing. At one point, it crosses a busy road. There is a crosswalk there. And a sign warning motorists that there is a crosswalk ahead.
It took me months after moving there to anticipate that someone might step into the crosswalk as I was driving down the street. They have very carefully landscaped the area so that you can't see there is a bikepath there, unless you are directly in line with it. There are bushes and other plantings, so it looks just like the front yards of the houses on either side of the path. I remember thinking at one point, "There should be a warning sign for drivers along here." The next time I took that street, I was looking very carefully and I noticed that, among the many street signs on that stretch of road, there was indeed a sign indicating a crosswalk was ahead.
But the combination of the landscaping hiding the entrance to the path and the sign being buried among all the other signs, and there was no real warning to drivers that there was a lot of foot/bike/stroller traffic right there. And it was nowhere near an intersection. In general, I'm a pretty careful driver and I pay attention to signs, so if I was missing the entrance of the bike path, I'm sure a lot of other drivers were as well. And I used the bike path, so I knew it was there.
So I'm wondering if part of the problem the OP is experiencing is that there aren't enough clues for drivers to indicate that they need to be more careful along that stretch of road. If they aren't expecting pedestrians, and the road itself isn't sending signals to them to expect them, maybe more or better signs or some different landscaping might help.