The new pedestrian crosswalk on West Bay Road in front of the Strand shopping centre is now complete and the National Roads Authority is asking motorists and pedestrians to pay particular attention.
The design incorporates a flashing yellow sign to be activated by pedestrians as well as a consistent flashing yellow beacon to warn motorists of the presence of the crosswalk. It has been installed following the 2010 review on ways to improve pedestrian safety on West Bay Road.
“The Government is always looking for ways in which to improve road safety and the experience for all who uses our road systems. Marked crosswalks are one of the tools that works to enhance pedestrian’s mobility and safety,” said Premier Hon. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly and Minister responsible for National Roads Authority.
“Now we need the driving public and pedestrians to be pay particular attention to the signs - drivers should stop when the lights are flashing yellow and pedestrians should only walk when the sign says walk,” she added.
NRA Transportation Planner Marion Pandohie asks motorists to be on the lookout for the flashing yellow sign as you approach the Canal Point - Strand Shopping Center area.
“This crosswalk requires pedestrians to press a button before proceeding to cross the road. The yellow flashing lights will then begin. We are also asking that pedestrians be mindful that vehicles will need more time to stop if the road is wet or slippery,” Ms Pandohie said.
“When crossing, look both ways for traffic that might be overtaking: STOP – LOOK – LISTEN and continue to look and listen while crossing,” she said.
The new Road Code (2012 Edition s.110 TL) states to “never assume traffic will stop for you, double check to make absolutely sure it has stopped before proceeding to cross the road.
“West Bay Road carries a high volume of traffic and running through a largely tourist area, there is unfortunately a high potential for traffic accidents. Creating the crosswalk is the first step in attempting to make this stretch of road safer for drivers and pedestrians alike,” Ms Pandohie said.
Once the Esterley Tibbetts Highway is completed, it is expected that there will be a reduction of the speed limit from 40 mph to 30 and additional activated crosswalks will be installed along the West Bay Road. In addition, intersection improvements at Lawrence Boulevard will be used as ways to improve the pedestrian landscape of West Bay Road. Other proposals included the improvement of overhead lighting for better pedestrian visibility.
NRA Acting Director Paul Parchment apologized for the delay in activating the crosswalk because the flashing lights did not arrive as scheduled. He also asked the driving public to be mindful of pedestrians near the Strand Shopping Centre area.
“The NRA is asking all motorists exiting Canal Point drive onto the West Bay Road to be especially cognizant of the impending cross walk as pedestrians could be present,” Mr. Parchment said.