Martyn Williams writes a letter to city staff and councillors to plea for safer intersections for old people and people who live with disabilities. “This is not an issue where engineers may balance the cost to vulnerable road user lives against the benefit gained to traffic flow. It is a human rights issue that requires urgent action and intervention by leadership through appropriate policy.”
Martyn Williams writes the Halifax road safety steering committee after drivers killed 8 pedestrians on crosswalks since the beginning of 2018.
A 3-year construction-related closure of a Robie Street sidewalk will require either a long detour along Agricola, a very dangerous unmarked crosswalk crossing of Robie, or a one-kilometre detour along signalized crosswalks. That’s too hard for many people who are older or who live with disabilities, writes Martyn Williams.
Two recent crosswalk incidents, causing injuries and death respectively, were the result of drivers turning right on a red light. These were not the first, and they won’t be the last. It’s time to act, writes Martyn Williams.
10 pedestrians died in Halifax traffic over the last 2 years, almost half of them while using a crosswalk. Making crosswalks safer is not rocket science, writes Martyn Williams, so why should we accept that our life and personal safety is less important than traffic flow?
There are so many concrete things HRM could and should do to make this city safer for all, but HRM rather focuses on “raising awareness,” writes Martyn Williams.
Yesterday two pedestrians were hit in full daylight in Halifax, the first resulting in life threatening injuries. Road safety, particularly for the most vulnerable users, is a human right. It’s not down to political choices/discretion, it must be addressed with adequate funds, measures and a robust road safety plan.
On Tuesday evening, news of yet another extremely serious pedestrian incident. At 7.45pm on a wet and windy evening, a 57 year old man was hit by a vehile on the 300 block of Windmill Road, Dartmouth and left with life threatening injuries. Martyn Williams has some observatons about the age of the victim, and the state of Windmill Road.
Two pedestrian fatalities and an additional two serious incidents involving cyclists inside a week is too much for any one of us to bear. A city which is a liability for its most vulnerable road users has lost its way, its soul and spirit. Yet some inexpensive but highly effective measures could begin to turn things around almost immediately, writes Martyn Williams.
Martyn Williams: “Roads which look and feel like Highways don’t belong in urban areas and will only result in more fatalities involving all road users and no progress with achieving transport diversity and creating enjoyable, liveable communities. We need to figure out a cost effective means of adapting them for use by all.”