Orlando Injury Law Blog

Orlando Initiative to Make Streets More Pedestrian-Friendly

Monday, June 02, 2014

It is one of the most pedestrian–unfriendly cities in a state that ranks number one in the country for the number of people killed in accidents while walking. Orlando has a massive challenge ahead of it, as it launches an initiative to help reduce the number of accidents involving pedestrians on its streets.

According to NPR, the Semoran Blvd. in Orlando is one example of exactly why the city is so unsafe for pedestrians. There have been at least 28 pedestrian accidents on this stretch of road over the last seven years alone. Six people died in those accidents. Florida already has a terrible reputation as far as pedestrian safety is concerned, and is regarded as the most dangerous state in the country for pedestrians.

However, some city planners in Orlando have been working quietly behind the scenes to understand what changes can be made to the current infrastructure to bring down fatality numbers. According to at least one planner, there are a number of features on Semoran Blvd. that make it very dangerous for pedestrians. For starters, this road has six lanes, and no median. It is also a major traffic artery, and cars travel here at very high speeds of at least 40 mph.

This also happens to be a pedestrian-magnet because there are many commercial and convenience facilities around. Many pedestrians cross the road in the middle of the street across six lanes of traffic to get to the other side.

Apart from making changes to the infrastructure, the initiative in Orlando will include a campaign called Best Foot Forward, which includes regular sting operations, and citations of motorists who endanger pedestrian safety by breaking rules, especially in crosswalks. Schools will also include pedestrian safety as part of their curriculum.

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