Saturday, April 21, 2018
Transportation

Crosswalk at 54th Avenue N and 81st Street is being studied

On Jan. 11 a friend and neighbor was killed crossing 54th Avenue N at 81st Street. His mistake was that he thought he was safe crossing the street; he was in a pedestrian crosswalk. This crosswalk must be one of the most dangerous I have ever seen. There are three lanes of traffic traveling west on 54th and two lanes going east. Too many times cars ignore the posted signs and pedestrians have to guess if the cars are going to stop, or as in the case of my friend, one car stopped and the car that struck him went around the stopped car. What is the law in Florida for pedestrian crosswalks? Are cars required to stop when they see a pedestrian in the crosswalk? And can the existing pedestrian crossing signage on 54th Avenue N be replaced with a better style of pedestrian cross walk signage?

John Schneider

We shared this letter, one of several expressing concern about the that crosswalk, with county traffic engineering staff. In addition, many readers say that motorists persist in ignoring the presence of pedestrians attempting to cross 54th Avenue N near Holy Cross Catholic Church and the neighboring Eagles Park shopping center.

According to Debra Jaramillo, an engineering supervisor for Pinellas County, state Rep. Larry Ahern has also made an inquiry about the crosswalks in this area, which prompted an investigation that began last month. The county is conducting a study and gathering data as a first step in making improvements.

"This was one of the earliest flashing pedestrian crossings that we installed. We recognize that it is time to upgrade it, plus we have some ideas for additional safety improvements along the corridor," Jaramillo said last week.

As to the question about state law, yes, motorists are required to yield to pedestrians in designated crosswalks. Florida law also states that pedestrians are not to suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle that is so close that it is impossible for the driver to yield. To read pedestrian traffic regulations, visit flsenate.gov/statutes, click on the motor vehicles link, then select chapter 316 (State Uniform Traffic Control) and scroll down to read statute 316.130.

Reading your article on the ongoing Ulmerton Road work I find an upsetting omission. The current projects are to make a six-lane road both east and west of the Seminole bypass canal. Is there any work to be done to the four-lane bridge over the canal, or is it to be a big bottleneck?

Jerry Ross

There are indeed plans to widen the bridge. It will be extended to accommodate the six-lane section, but the work is not scheduled to happen right away. This phase is anticipated to take place sometime between November 2013 and February 2014, according to the state Department of Transportation.

I regularly drive Gandy Boulevard from Fourth Street N to U.S. 19. As I work on Bryan Dairy, it would be very nice to be able to get onto Interstate 275 and get off the interstate at the correct exit, but that is not an option. There is a southbound I-275 entrance ramp from westbound Gandy — why not a NB entrance?

The DOT has no plans to add to add an on-ramp in this location, according to spokesperson Kris Carson, who noted that motorists can use Roosevelt Boulevard or Fourth Street to head north.

Email Dr. Delay at [email protected] to share your traffic concerns or follow Dr. Delay on Twitter @AskDrDelay.

Comments
Free rides on PSTA and HART buses to celebrate Earth Day

Free rides on PSTA and HART buses to celebrate Earth Day

Those who use mass transit across the Tampa Bay area can ride for free on Sunday.To celebrate Earth Day, both the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA) and the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority (HART) will be offering free rides on Su...
Published: 04/19/18
She calmly landed the Southwest flight and broke barriers as a fighter pilot

She calmly landed the Southwest flight and broke barriers as a fighter pilot

The pilot’s voice was calm yet focused as her plane descended with 149 people on board."Southwest 1380, we’re single engine," Tammie Jo Shults, a former fighter pilot with the U.S. Navy, said. "We have part of the aircraft missing so we’re going to n...
Published: 04/18/18
Carlton: Thanks, Gov. Scott, for the dreaded trip across Interstate 4

Carlton: Thanks, Gov. Scott, for the dreaded trip across Interstate 4

The other day I had to go to Orlando from Tampa on Interstate 4, which has to be one of the most disliked highways in Florida. And I say this as someone who learned to drive on Miami’s I-95.It turned out to be the same root canal of a trip we’ve come...
Published: 04/18/18
NTSB: Blown Southwest jet engine showed ‘metal fatigue’

NTSB: Blown Southwest jet engine showed ‘metal fatigue’

PHILADELPHIA — A preliminary examination of the blown jet engine of the Southwest Airlines plane that set off a terrifying chain of events and left a businesswoman hanging half outside a shattered window showed evidence of "metal fatigue," according ...
Published: 04/18/18
Group promoting road safety out in force on 56th Street Monday

Group promoting road safety out in force on 56th Street Monday

TEMPLE TERRACE — If all goes as planned on Monday (April 23), at least 100 people will line the sides of one of the most dangerous stretches in Hillsborough County — 56th Street between Sligh Avenue and Busch Boulevard — in an effort to get motorists...
Published: 04/17/18
Updated: 04/18/18
Big dig’s big cost: Pasco tunnel idea carries $550 million price tag

Big dig’s big cost: Pasco tunnel idea carries $550 million price tag

NEW PORT RICHEY — Construction costs to tunnel under U.S. 41 in central Pasco could top a half-billion dollars, four times the projected price of building elevated lanes above the highway’s intersection with State Road 54.The cost estimate, said Comm...
Published: 04/17/18
Dr. Delay: How to find out if you qualify for a speed hump; updates on the Pinellas Bayway

Dr. Delay: How to find out if you qualify for a speed hump; updates on the Pinellas Bayway

I live in St. Pete and would like to know how I could go about getting a speed hump installed on my street. Where do I start?Manuel Reyes, St. PetersburgThe place to start would be by contacting the St. Petersburg Neighborhood Transportation Manager,...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18
He got fed up with Miami traffic, so now he commutes with dolphins and pelicans

He got fed up with Miami traffic, so now he commutes with dolphins and pelicans

Parker Lake got sick of the rat race. Sick of working in a cubicle. Sick of commuting on Miami’s mean streets. Sick of being overweight from sitting at a desk or in traffic jams.So Lake quit his unfulfilling job, sold his car and moved to a house on ...
Published: 04/09/18
A sixth person killed by the high-speed Brightline train in Florida

A sixth person killed by the high-speed Brightline train in Florida

The Brightline train fatally struck a man Sunday, bringing the total killed by the train to six people since it began test runs last year.The Delray Beach Police Department announced on Twitter that a pedestrian was hit Sunday by a northbound Brightl...
Published: 04/09/18
Dr. Delay: Will the lights at 87th Avenue N and Fourth Street cause extra congestion?

Dr. Delay: Will the lights at 87th Avenue N and Fourth Street cause extra congestion?

Massive new street signals were erected at the intersection of 87th Avenue N. and Fourth Street, just four blocks north from the light-controlled intersection at 83rd Avenue N. At the same time a new WaWa store/gas station is being constructed near 8...
Published: 04/09/18