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“A huge thanks to Edward Romaine, Daniel Losquadro, and Jonathan Kornreich for taking a critical step in making Setauket a safer place for pedestrian safety and healthy lifestyles. As a result of their efforts, this highly-trafficked section of West Meadow Road now allows walkers and runners to safely access West Meadow Beach and Trustees Road.”

 
The safe new sidewalk begins on Mount Grey Road and connects to Trustees Road.


“You find the path by walking it.” — Maya Angelou

Read the article:
https://tbrnewsmedia.com/tag/town-of-brookhaven-highway-department/

New sidewalks in the area:

Thank you to the Town of Brookhaven for improving the sidewalk on Cedar Street in Stony Brook Village, this is great for residents who live in the village they can now safetly walk to the train station, university and restaurants.

New York State improved the sidewalk along 25A connecting Setauket and Port Jefferson by sidewalk, this is a tremendous improvement to all residents especially those living on and around 25A.

Miller Place has added a new sidewalk along North Country Road in the historic district creating a historic small town feel. Well done Miller Place and the Town of Brookhaven we love the new sidewalk.

St. James has added a new sidewalk along the main street, this is a huge improvement for all the stores and restaurants and will allow more residents to walk around safely and school children can walk safely along the high street. Well done St. James we love the new sidewalks! Looking forward to sitting in the new ‘Celebrate Park’ and eating ice cream from Mickey’s ice cream kitchen…




Suffolk County Legislature Kara Hahn, Town of Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine & Councilwoman Valerie Cartright at the Sidewalks For Safety awards ceremony for Ward Melville High School Students. Thank you so much to the winning students: 1st Place Nicole De Lucia , Benjamin Dombroff, 2nd place Mia Schoolman & 3rd place Elyas Masrour.

We were fortunate to have Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine present the awards at a recent, well attended, Three Village School District Board Meeting. A big shout out to County Legislator Kara Hahn and Town Councilwoman Valerie Cartwright for their continual support for SFS.  Our contest would not have been possible without the help of Three Village School Superintendent Cheryl Pedisich and Ward Melville High School principal William Bernhard.

Sidewalks for Safety (SFS) sponsored a video contest for Ward Melville High School students to promote a greater awareness of current traffic issues and the importance of sidewalks.  Students were asked to express their concerns of getting safely to school and around the community. We got a great response from the Ward Melville students and some really great entries!  You can see the winning videos by clicking below.

SFS vision is for a minimal number of strategically placed sidewalks on  a few connector roads to enable students and residents to walk safely. Imagine your kids being able walk safely to school, to friends houses, imagine being able to jog to West Meadow Beach, imagine being able to walk to get a coffee, being able to walk to the local shops. Walkable communities are associated with higher home values!

Nicole De Lucia’s winning video:

Benjamin Dombroff’s winning video: https://youtu.be/7zAouBxJ_q0

Mia Schoolman’s winning video:

Elyas Masrour’s winning video:

Drive the Limit. – meaning: never drive higher than the posted speed limit. Save your life, and other lives!! Speed matters: only 5% of pedestrians would die if struck by a vehicle traveling at 20 mph or less. At 30 mph, there’s a 40% chance of fatal injury if struck; at 40 mph, the chance of dying increases to 80%, and at 50 mph, it reaches 100%. – U.S. Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.


Buying a New Home, Relocating?


by Patrice Alexander

How Wonderful – I’m sure you have a wish list of “MUST HAVE” features. Generally, the requests focus on an open floor plan, a large eat-in kitchen, spacious baths, and room for a pool. Surprisingly, a new entry has gained a footing on this list, a desire for SIDEWALKS. Very Pedestrian indeed!

New Home Buyers are interested in legacy or planned neighborhoods that have walkable, gathering areas; including areas; to include a central town square with space for biking, running, jogging, strollers, parks, & more observational amenities within a 15-minute walk.

We worked with a young family from Rockland County with two small children who were relocating to Long Island. At the top of their list of amenities was a “walkable neighborhood.” They felt isolated on their 3-acre upstate property and were looking forward to enjoying outdoor activities and also meeting other young families within a hamlet environment.

According to a NAR (National Association of Realtors), “The trend toward walkable communities continues to grow in popularity, with walkable neighborhoods growing more than twice as fast as the overall market.” The up-buzz continues In the NAR publication “On Common Ground”, Author, Steven Wright, discusses the “15-minute city, that focuses on increasing a mix of uses and amenities citywide or in key neighborhoods, the 15-minute concept emphasizes meeting all needs on foot, via bicycle or by using public transit.” This is definitely a throwback to how things used to be, Jane Jacobs revisited! The NAR publication continues- The 15-minute city was conceptualized by Colombian-French scientist Carlos Moreno. He sketched four guiding principles of the 15-minute city: Ecology: for a green and sustainable city. Proximity: to live with reduced distance to other activities. Solidarity: to create links between people. Participation: actively involve citizens in the transformation of their neighborhood. Moreno states that the 15-minute city is in the tradition of Jane Jacobs,” the legendary urban activist-author who published “The Death and Life of Great American Cities” in 1961. “She developed this idea for livable cities — very vibrant, with green public space, social uses, different activities.”

The Brooking Institute mentioned that the “The Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis’ report, Foot Traffic Ahead 2019, that more walkable places—in cities and suburbs alike—are growing in number and are in high demand. Its findings suggest that to truly understand who is moving where we should be looking at the attributes of places rather than the arbitrary jurisdictional boundaries that separate them.”

What are some of the attributes that drive this movement? It is not only experiential with access to entertainment, engagement, and sociability but these areas can transform us with life-affirming infrastructures. Investments in Infrastructure can support the underpinnings of these transformations. As a model, The Highline in New York City helps us gain perspective. It’s an uplifting experience. The Highline is set high above the streets, yet you feel very connected to the activities at street level. The walkers, including myself, walk very quietly and deliberately in somewhat of a meditative trance and upon exiting this oasis we’re all smiling and refreshed.

Our small pocket parks propel health and forest bathing (Shinrin-yoku). By walking through the treed and natural green areas we are enveloped within the green medicine of healing scents, sounds, and natural art. In an article by Bum Jin Park et al. Environmental Health Preventive Medicine. 2010 Jan, “the physiological findings of a study on “Forest Bathing” demonstrate that “a forest environment promotes lower concentrations of cortisol, lower pulse rate, lower blood pressure, greater parasympathetic nerve activity and lower sympathetic nerve activity.

The Foot Traffic Ahead article also reported that “the walk Ups – or walkable Urban areas are smaller geographically but deliver greater economic and innovative performance.” These power hubs are driven by people, their mix of cultures, cooperation, and curiosity. This engagement with a mix of nature, persons, and supportive places improves the overall economic health of an area.

Sidewalks help us explore the pulse pockets of an area through walking patterns and the proximal presence of characters like us! We are made to move, to propel forward and safe sidewalks help our stride and minimize the gaps toward our transformation.

That was no Accident!


By Herb Mones

A pedestrian is hit by a car crossing the street.
A bicyclist is sideswiped and left for dead on the side of the road.
A child is hit by a truck while playing in the street.

Tragic accidents? Readers of Sidewalks for Safety may want to take a different view on this…

The one thing the events listed above have in common is that observers, news coverage, and police reports, will term them “accidents.” A friend of yours might say, “I just saw an awful accident!” Or you might hear on the evening news, “An accident took the life of …”

But “accident” is not the term we should be using. Saying “accident” implies there was some uncontrollable force or forces at work, and that the event was essentially “unavoidable.” Almost always, however, these “accidents” could have been prevented. It is almost always the case that the driver was traveling at a high rate of speed, drunk or drug-impaired, distracted by their phone, sleep-deprived, or not paying attention to road conditions. Instead of using care and deliberation navigating a three thousand pound “projectile” traveling at sixty miles an hour, the driver was very likely careless and inattentive to the complex task of safely driving their vehicle.

Instead of treating driving as a highly complex, and extremely dangerous daily activity, too many drivers settle into a “driving complacency.” They are unaware of road conditions since they think of their vehicle as an extension of their home – allowing them to relax, eat, talk and text to friends on the phone, nestle with their pet (we’ve all seen this), and a number of other ‘living room’ activities.

Think about this: On average, every year, there are nearly 7 million car accidents in the United States. More than 38,000 Americans die in automobile accidents each year. Close to a million car crashes are caused by cell phone use while driving. According to the National Motor Vehicle Crash Causation Survey, fewer than 10% of accidents were caused by vehicle defects or the weather – almost all deaths in car accidents were the result of driver error.

Safety advocates increasingly are urging the use of the term “crash” instead of “accident.” The use of “crash” signals the event was not some random, unexplained, or unfortunate situation, but was likely the result of poor choices and decisions by the driver. Why does it matter if we use the term accident or crash?

We should not be giving a “pass” to those involved in roadside tragedies. By distancing ourselves from the term “accident,” we are forced to focus on what caused the incident. By saying crash, instead of an accident, we no longer minimize the responsibility of those responsible for the event.

Remember, the next time you see a crash, it was no accident. And, in doing so, we just might do a little self-reflection and reevaluation on how we drive!
  

IT’S NOT MANY STREETS BUT IT WOULD MAKE A MONUMENTAL DIFFERENCE.


Think about the possibilities of a more connected community. The main roads and more heavily traveled streets in our community are no longer safe for pedestrians and bicyclists. Wouldn't it be great to walk or bike safely to the centers of our community and the many attractions it has to offer? In order to make safer streets for everyone we would like to extend some of the existing sidewalks to certain areas of our town allowing for easier accessibility to West Meadow Beach, the Setauket Neighborhood House, and our area schools. Sidewalks add not only safety but increased value to our homes and a greater sense of community. It's not many streets but a few more sidewalk connections could make a monumental difference to the health of our town.

Thank you to Greg de Bruin for drawing this Sidewalk Map.
Go to: http://gdb.maps.arcgis.com/home/index.htm
Click on the basemap at top left and select and click Topographi to see simple streets background.
  1. The map shows existing sidewalks in 3V in green (we have quite a few we just need to connect them)
  2. The addition of Safe Routes To School SRTS in orange.
  3. Proposed sidewalks in red
  4. Proposed paths in state parks in purple


For A Safe Walkable Three Village Community:



  • Extend exsisting Christian Ave all the way to Main Street
  • Extend Mud Road to Ridgeway Ave (Re-align Mud Road to come into Ridgeway at 90 degrees, eliminating the large sweeping turn. This will make it easier for southbound vehicles to see eastbound traffic, it will slow down vehicles going west to north, and it will make it easier for pedestrians to cross Mud Road)
  • Extend Main Street from the Setauket Neighborhood House to 25A
  • Ridgeway Ave to Main Street
  • Quaker Path from 25A to Lubber Street
  • Dyke Road from Main Street along the water
  • Trustees Road to Mt Grey Road
  • Old Field Road to West Meadow Road
  • Old Town Road to WMHS
  • Extend existing on Gnarled Hollow Road to Sheep Pasture
  • Sheep Pasture to Old Town Road
  • Bennets Road to Sheep Pasture Road
  • Stony Brook Road from 347 to Stony Brook Village

Then we would have a more connected community. We prefer meandering paths full of trees where possible, but mostly we want to feel comfortable and safe when we walk and bike.

We would love to hear your thoughts.
Which roads do you think need a sidewalk?

Email us: sidewalksforsafetyli@gmail.com

Our community is a beautiful, green area. But did you know that Suffolk County has some of the worst air quality in New York? Allergy and asthma rates are increasing in both children and adults,1 leading to increased healthcare costs and reductions in quality of life. Air pollution is a significant contributor to these health problems. While some of that air pollution comes from power plants across state lines, our own automobile traffic plays a large role in creating the problem. Nationwide, car trips under a mile contribute an estimated 4 million metric tons of CO2 emissions a year.2 By walking or cycling for even some of these short trips, we can reduce the pollutants affecting our local air and the health of our children and seniors, who are especially vulnerable to the effects of air pollution.

Noise, particularly noise associated with transportation, is the second most significant (behind air pollution) source of environmental health effects.3 Environmental noise contributes to hearing loss, learning difficulties in children, sleep problems, and even heart disease. Modern cars and trucks are certainly quieter than they once were, but the quietest car is the one parked in the driveway! By making our community more accessible to pedestrians and cyclists, we’ll all benefit from improved air quality and lower noise levels.

1. http://www.aaaai.org/about-aaaai/newsroom/asthma-statistics
2. https://www.epa.gov/greenvehicles/what-if-we-kept-our-cars-parked-trips-less-one-mile-0
3. https://www.transportenvironment.org/what-we-do/vehicle-noise

NEW walking trail to West Meadow through the historic Old Field Farm.


Thank you Kara Hahn, Suffolk County Parks and Old Field Farm. This is a huge asset for the Three Village area. This new trail celebrates the historic architecture commissioned by Frank Melville and designed by architect Richard Haviland Smythe.

Three Village residents enjoy a beautiful morning stroll

The safe new trail begins on West Meadow Road, after the Old Field Club at the white gate of the Old Field Farm, and runs around the historic farm, along the shore ending on Trustees Road. In 1931 Long Island philanthropist Ward Melville built Old Field Farm, originally known as the North Shore Horse Show Grounds, on thirteen acres. This is a very special and unique area which has been designated an “outstanding natural coastal area” (ONCA) by New York State. Melville commissioned architect Richard Haviland Smythe to create a unique equestrian facility. The stable complex is composed a main barn and courtyard, numerous free-standing stables and a large old-fashioned wooden grandstand, all designed in the Colonial Revival style. The trail shows the splendor of these beautifully restored horse grounds and allows the public to fully appreciate the natural beauty and architecture of the area. The farm is also home to horse shows, and the trail will be closed during those shows to avoid spooking the horses.

This nearly half-mile trail can be used for walking, running, and biking. There are blind curves on West Meadow Road, and many cars speed, this trail allows walkers, runners, bikers to get to West Meadow Beach off a major part of this dangerous road. Sidewalks For Safety hopes that this trail could go even further and meander along The Old Field Club's, (also Founded by the Melville family in 1929) front lawn around the corner onto Mount Grey Road to end across from Glenwater Road. This would then allow the public to walk safely all the way to the beach from Quaker Path through the Historic community of Old Field South (also founded in 1929 by Frank Melville) where many of the black and white homes are designed by architect Richard Haviland Smythe. Old Field South grounds were designed by the landscape architect firm of Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park. Smythe also designed Stony Brook Village and the schools in the Three Village Central School District and this walk takes the public through this beautiful architecturally important area.


Sidewalks For Safety would like to see a sidewalk connecting West Meadow Beach with The Frank Melville Park, going all the way along West Meadow Road, as the road has become too busy with speeding cars going to the beach. The road is no longer comfortable for pedestrians and cyclists, is full of dangerous blind corners and would allow a beautiful connection and walking tribute to Frank Melville, reducing local traffic on the road and allow residents to walk safely to the beach.


Illustration by Elena Sadov


Make Your Child a Live Action Hero

By Herb Mones

Who wouldn’t want to be an Action Hero! It’s got to be exciting to have super powers, and also be able to save lives! Well, why not give your child the power to see danger, practice personal safety, and even alert companions of imminent threats to their lives.  

Of course, your child knows to walk in the correct direction to the traffic flow, wear bright clothing to easily be seen, and always wear a helmet when biking.  But you can teach your child to be a supersized Action Hero by training them in some other simple, but often untaught skills, when walking or bicycling.

Action Hero Skill #1 - Spot Rolling Dangers

When crossing an intersection, make eye contact with the driver of the stopped vehicle.  Don’t step into the intersection unless you can see that the driver knows you are about to cross the street.  A driver looking in a different direction, or even down at a cell phone, can very likely roll into the intersection with disastrous consequences to anyone crossing the road.

Action Hero Skill #2 - Avoid Blind Vehicles

As cars and trucks are backing out of driveways and parking spaces, the drivers are looking for approaching vehicles, but not necessarily smaller objects - like kids.  An ‘Action Hero’ recognizes the importance of the white-lit backup lights that signal  a vehicle is in its reverse gear. Beware of these vehicles - they are often blind to you.

Action Hero Skill #3 - Cross smart, Not Fast

If you need to run or bicycle quickly across a street to avoid oncoming traffic you are probably putting yourself in danger.  Having to cross quickly usually means the crossing is really unsafe.  A smarter choice is to find a safe, signaled controlled intersection.  Action heroes recognize being smart is more important than being fast.

Action Hero Skill #4 - Use Your Spidey Senses

When you are walking or bicycling, your sense of sight and hearing give you huge powers of understanding your surroundings.  If you are looking at your smart phone, or listening to music with your ear buds, you are sacrificing some special powers that will certainly put you at risk. Walking and bicycling require your full attention.

Action Hero Skill #5 - Have A Safe Space Travel

Safe walking and bicycling on suburban roads is more challenging than ever. There are more cars and they are traveling faster and faster. Drivers sit in their ‘cabins’ and are constantly distracted by the car’s ‘living room features’ – music systems, incoming phone messages, navigational alerts, etc.

For walkers and bicyclists danger constantly exists because there are no sidewalks, and the shoulders of the roadway are very narrow or non-existent.  This means that you are competing for space with 3000 pound cars, or monstrous trucks and buses piloted by distracted drivers.  If that’s not bad enough, today’s vehicles have side mirrors that extend far beyond the vehicles body and pose a special hazard to anyone nearby.  What to do?  Be sure to leave plenty of space between you and the nearby traffic.  This may mean that there are times you need to step off the road surface, or dismount your bike and walk.  By constantly being aware of the need for enough ‘space,’ you will guarantee your future adventures!


“Now shall I walk or shall I ride?
‘Ride,’ Pleasure said;
‘Walk,’ Joy replied. ”
                             — W.H. Davies



Dear Stony Brook & Setauket



Recently I went to Swarthmore, Pennsylvania (population was 6,194 as of the 2010 census) to visit my good friend who just moved there from Setauket. Like Stony Brook and Setauket (population was 19,378 at the 2010 census) it's a college town with lots of lovely trees. Unlike Stony Brook and Setauket, Swarthmore has sidewalks and a lovely green center square with a great food co-op, local coffee shops, a bookstore and restaurants with outdoor tables (I wish we had all these), all next to the train station where they have fast commuter trains to Philadelphia (wishing again here!).

Kids in Swarthmore have freedom: they can walk to school and walk to friends homes. There's a farmers market in the square every Saturday, as well as music and performances. Senors can walk around and parents are not taxi drivers. Everywhere you walk you're greeted by friendly neighbors who are also out walking, jogging or cycling. It was the most enjoyable few days because we hardly used the car.  We shopped and ate locally and took many wonderful walks on sidewalks and through the beautiful college grounds. My friend tells me this is the most joyous thing and although she really misses Setauket (especially North Shore Montessori & Emma Clark) she feels that having sidewalks has really changed her family's life for the better.

I just couldn't stop myself from thinking all we need to do is connect a few of our main streets. If only we extended the sidewalk from Christain Ave to Main St, Quaker Path from 25A to Lubber St, extended Mud Rd to Ridgeway Ave, Ridgeway Ave to Main St, extended Main St from the Neighborhood House to 25A, extend existing on Gnarled Hollow Road to Sheep Pasture, complete Old Town Road to 347, Mount Grey to West Meadow Beach. It's not that many streets and then our children could walk safely to Gelinas and Ward Melville. We could walk to the train station, we would cut down on congestion and the need to drive everywhere and children could walk to school and friends' houses; Stony Brook University students and staff would be safe; senors could walk to the Neighborhood House; many residents could walk safely to the beach. Sidewalks are all about safety and a better quality of life, something that will ultimately enhance the value of our neighborhoods and communities. We could all enjoy our beautiful green community more if we could walk safely around it!
                                                                                –Annemarie Waugh

Driverless Cars and You


Get ready! The next revolution in transportation has begun - the driverless car. Already, autonomous vehicles are being introduced in different towns and cities across the country to serve as taxis or deliver goods.

As with all technologies, autonomous vehicles carry an element of risk. Although connectivity with other vehicles and roadside infrastructure will reduce that risk, signals sometimes fail.

Designing a vehicle that can navigate any condition using only what it can sense on its own may be the most difficult task of all. Proponents of these vehicles also stress the safety of leaving the complex task of driving to software that cannot be impeded by emotion, drinking, distractions and other human weaknesses.

But, as we look forward to the time when we can rely on our ‘automatic’ vehicles to whisk us to work, store, or meetings, maybe, just maybe, we need to ask ourselves how we keep engineering ourselves into a lifestyle of poor health and well being.

More than two-thirds of our country’s population is now obese or overweight.  Cardiovascular disease and diabetes have skyrocketed over the past three decades.  A sedentary lifestyle is increasingly typical to all age segments of the population. And, while our health care system remains first class, it is increasingly burdened by costs linked to poor diet and lack of exercise.  

Perhaps today, more than ever, we need to engineer ways to increase the opportunities to exercise.  Communities with sidewalks and footpaths tend to be healthier due to the ease and access of recreational opportunities. Children have the opportunity to engage with their friends and neighbors without being ‘in the street.’ Sidewalks build closer, more connected and friendlier communities.

So, while we may marvel at the latest innovations in autonomous vehicles, we might just want to tap the brakes and think where we are going.  Maybe, the engineering feat we need is simpler and basic – more practical ways to get us out and about using our own two feet. Sidewalks do just that!
                                                                            –Herb Mones

Life with Sidewalks


A few weeks ago, a survey was sent out via Facebook and email to area residents to ask those who lived on streets with sidewalks to share their experiences about their sidewalks.  The survey is shown below, along with the results from the survey.  As of this writing, 28 people have responded to the survey.  The survey is still open.  To take the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LG2CX9J

This survey asks residents who live on streets with sidewalks to tell us about their experiences.

1. What street do you reside on?

The respondents were from all over Three Village and Port Jefferson areas.

2. In a typical day/week, for what purposes do you use the sidewalk?

Walking for exercise – 67%

Walk the dog- 30%

Walking to do errands, visit town 41%

Visit neighbors- 33%

Other (please specify)- Children walk to neighbors’ houses, ride bicycles, and walk to school. Children also walk to their school bus.

3. How often do you utilize your sidewalks?

Everyday 46%

A few times per week 32%

Infrequently- 14%

Never 7%

4. Do you think the sidewalk adds or reduces value to your property?

Adds value 68%

Reduces value 14%

No change 21%

5. Who utilizes your sidewalk?

Neighbors 71%

Students 61%

Commuters 32%

Other (please specify)

For the most part, the sidewalks are used by all of these people, neighbors, students, commuters. In addition, children serve as a large population who utilize the sidewalks. As many of our current sidewalks are in neighborhoods surrounding Stony Brook University and are utilized by students of the university, it is important that the university be part of the conversation about maintaining and building sidewalks in our area.   

6. Does your sidewalk make you feel safe or unsafe in your neighborhood?

Safe 79%

Unsafe 11%

No difference 11%

7. Would you prefer to have sidewalks or not to have sidewalks?

Yes, I prefer the sidewalk 86%

No, I would prefer no sidewalk 14%

8. Do your sidewalks need improvement?

Yes  63%

No  37%

9. Do you have any other comments, questions, or concerns?

The following are comments left by some of the respondents.  The issues addressed range from a need for more sidewalks to ensure the safety of residents to the concerns about the cost of building and maintaining sidewalks.  The maintenance of sidewalks is an important issue as many of our existing sidewalks are in poor condition and are currently not maintained by the Town of Brookhaven.  Comment number 4 represents the argument against building more sidewalks in the area.  

COMMENTS
  1. My street doesn't have sidewalks but the nearby town of Port Jefferson has many streets with sidewalks. I prefer those streets when I run and go for a walk with my children. I would love to have sidewalks on my street as I would feel safer when letting my kids visit their neighborhood friends on their own. Also, I think it would definitely liven up the neighborhood and make it safer for everybody with more people outside.
  2. We need more safe routes on Quaker Path, Christian Ave.
  3. In our neighborhood, most people prefer to walk in the street. I think that this is because portions of our sidewalk are in disrepair or are not significantly wide enough to comfortably accommodate two people (or one person and a dog) across. Also, people rarely clean the sidewalk when we have snow.
  4. I would rather the town spend their resources fixing our roads than putting resources in sidewalks that will need more money for maintenance.
  5. Would love to have crosswalks painted near the duck pond. Especially for those people who live on the side of Main Street that does not have sidewalks. Due to the excessive and unmonitored speeding down Main St., it's pretty dangerous to cross the street at Hawkins, Mills Pond, etc.
  6. We have called about the mess the sidewalk is in. The town does not maintain at all, someone will get hurt. This area has a lot of student use due to location. The town & university should be concerned about safety and make a point of clearing them in the winter for the high amount of walkers.
  7. The sidewalks on Pond Path need to be extended. We have one block to walk toward school before the sidewalk begins and that segment is frightening. The other concern is that some homeowners do not trim their bushes or shovel their walks as they are required to do.

      8.  Sidewalks on Thompson Hay!!! Please give us more of a chance to walk safely in our community.

© 2021 SIDEWALKS FOR SAFETY

3V more walkable.                                 



Woman walking on Quaker Path 6:15 on Tuesday Feb 14th

Can they see you?

When walking, we share the road with motor vehicles, bicycles, and other walkers. We usually take for granted that we can walk without incident. But accidents can and do occur. To keep yourself and others safe, it's important to follow the rules of the road. It's mind-boggling that many of the main Three Village Roads are without basic infrastructure like a sidewalk in this day and age. It's even more stunning when you stop to remember that there are schools nearby.

Walk Facing Traffic
If there is no sidewalk and you must walk on the side of the road, choose the side where you are facing oncoming traffic. In North America, this is the left side of the road. This gives you the best chance to see traffic approaching closest to you and take evasive action when needed.
       
Cross Safely
Look both ways before crossing any street. At controlled intersections, it is wise to cross only when you have the pedestrian crossing light, but even then, drivers and bikers may have a green light to turn and won't be expecting you to be in the crosswalk. Make eye contact with any drivers who may be turning. Give them a wave. Make sure they see you. Cross only at corners or marked crosswalks. Always walk when crossing the street – never run! You could trip and fall when running.

Walk Single File
Unless you are on a sidewalk separated from the road or a wide bike lane, you should walk in single file. This is especially important on a road with lots curves, where traffic has only a split second chance of seeing you before hitting you. While it can be enjoyable to walk down the road two to three abreast chatting merrily, drivers don't expect it and you may lose your best walking buddies.
       
Stay Aware of Bikes and Runners
Share the road and path with bikes and runners. Bike riders should alert you when approaching from behind with a bike bell or a "passing on the left/right." Listen for them, and move to walk single file, allowing them to pass safely. Runners should also call out for passing. Bike-walker collisions can result in broken bones or head injury for either — and you aren't wearing a helmet.
   
Be Visible
Wear bright colors when walking in daytime. When walking at night, wear light-colored clothing and reflective clothing or a reflective vest to be visible. Drivers are often not expecting walkers to be out after dark, and you need to give them every chance to see you, even at street crossings that have crossing signals. Be just as cautious at dawn or twilight, as drivers still have limited visibility or may even have the setting or rising sun directly in their eyes.

Wear reflective gear to be seen at night
Don’t wear dark colors, drivers may not recognize you as a human. Your walking clothes should have reflective stripes on the front, back, and down the sides. Many packs and shoes have reflective patches or stripes. Wearing a reflective safety vest is a very good choice to ensure you'll be seen when walking at night.

Use lights
Even if you are walking in an area with streetlights, you may encounter some dark patches. A lightweight flashlight can come in handy. Or, you can wear a headlamp to keep your hands free and not stress your wrists. Look for a model that allows you to adjust the angle of the beam so it will focus where you need it.

Be Predictable
Make a practice of staying on one side of the path while walking rather than weaving randomly from side to side.

Keep the Volume Down
Don't drown out your environment with your headphones. Keep the volume at a level where you can still hear bike bells and warnings from other walkers and runners.

Stop texting and chatting
Chatting or texting on a mobile device while you walk is as dangerous as doing those things while driving. You are distracted and not as aware of your environment. You are less likely to recognize traffic danger, passing joggers and bikers or tripping hazards. Potential criminals see you as a distracted easy target.
       
Walk Dogs on Short Leashes
Don't trip up other walkers or bikers with poor control of your pet. Keep your pet and yourself safe by learning proper leash walking.

By Cyndi Keane

“An Early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day”
                                                                                — Henry David Thoreau
© Sidewalks For Safety 2024