Monday, June 15, 2009

Candlelight Vigil for Baby Killed in Hit and Run Crash on Mansfield Street

The New Haven Independent reports here on the candlelight vigil for Montez Turner Jr. and Mauricia Stanley, which was attended by over 100 New Haven residents, and lasted well into the evening. An earlier, much more detailed story about the hit-and-run crash can be found here. The deadly collision occurred at the intersections of the Newhallville, Dixwell and Prospect Hill/East Rock neighborhoods, right next to the northeast corner of Science Park.

On the New Haven Independent's main report, there are a number of public comments which have to do with safety. Here are a few:

I am very familiar with that intersection and there definitely needs a mechanism that slow down traffic on that long somewhat winding block of Mansfield between Division and Munson Streets. Drivers speed both ways on that street, and, as walkers could attest, the drivers seem surprised, rushed and even irritated that there are even stop signs at each end.

Streets in front of the Capitol in Hartford have 10 MPH limits and pedestrian safety refuges. Streets in wealthy towns like Darien and Greenwich have 15 MPH speed limits and barriers in the street that make these kinds of crashes almost impossible (unless perhaps you are a trained stunt driver). Kids play out on them.

A speeding car through a stop sign is alarming and this time, tragic; however, how about all those citizens who do the "California roll" and just slow down enough to quickly look both ways and then roll on through. It seems to be the New Haven attitude toward stop signs.

No one expects to get hit by a car speeding through a stop sign. No one expects to their car roof supports to be tested by rolling down a hill. That's why you take EVERY PRECAUTION to protect these precious babies.

The Federal TF Highway Research Center quotes a study of 181 intersections converted to roundabouts which showed a 95% reduction in car crashes with injuries and an 89% reduction in pedestrian crashes with injuries. A single, correctly designed road facility can eliminate 100% of crashes. When you look at the figures of 95% injury reduction on 181 new roundabouts, for example, it is quite likely that at least half of those new roundabouts prevented 100% of injuries, while the other half had more mixed safety records (e.g., a 90% reduction).

Look at this bad community. A hit and run is always happening. But what they need to know is that these streets are dangerous.

And our city celebrates DOT widening Whalley. [see here for details on that]

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