Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Solution to Pedestrian Problems

Today Atlantic Cities has a piece called "Police Stings for Drivers Who Don't Yield in Crosswalks: Does it Really Work?"  They cite scientific research and conclude that yes, it does work.

Recently in Fort Lee, New Jersey, a place many commuters speed through while driving to New York, a police sting operation was set up to ticket people who didn't yield to pedestrians in crosswalks.  This approach could certainly help solve the problem we experienced this winter in the areas around Wheaton of traffic hitting people who are walking across streets.

Can we have a traffic crosswalk behavior sting in Wheaton, please?


  1. Perfect timing, as Montgomery County Police just announced today that they will be conducting pedestrian safety enforcement operations throughout April and May, including several spots in Wheaton, Aspen Hill, and Glenmont:


    Ken Silverman
    Office of Council President Nancy Navarro

    1. Thanks for the encouraging announcement, that's great to hear!! And it is great to see the blog being read by people in the Council's office! Thanks!

      The other main suggestion of the studies was to change the configuration of streets so they are clearly meant for cars and people using other modes of transportation. Right now many streets are set up for speed, which sends a message to drivers that it is their space and their space only. Adding obstacles and speed control measures can change that belief and make pedestrians safer by slowing down traffic. Please consider those types of changes moving forward.

    2. Always exciting to see new perspectives on Wheaton! You're right that many of the pedestrian (and bycicle) safety issues we face stem from the car-oriented attitude our county had for a long time. The ability to redo some of those intersections so that they are more friendly to other modes of transportation is one of the reasons we are so excited to jump start redevelopment in Wheaton. If you or your readers ever need information or assistance from Councilmember Navarro, please don't hesitate to reach out: ken.silverman@montgomerycountymd.gov

  2. Avocado: Thanks again for bringing up this very important topic. Ken: Thanks for taking notice. I'm very glad to hear the Councilmember and MCP recognize we have a problem.

  3. You might want to call the Third District police and ask to talk to Sgt. Tom Harmon, who is in charge of traffic enforcement for the district -- the main number is (301) 565-7744. He is a great guy and is serious about pedestrian safety.

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