Preventing Traffic Deaths In Jamestown

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JAMESTOWN – City officials are eyeing new proposals to reduce the amount of traffic related injuries and deaths.

In the past year there has been a death, and an obscene amount of traffic accidents that could have led to injuries within the City of Jamestown.

One worried resident, Melissa Paterniti spoke to members of the Safety Committee about concerns that endanger the safety of city walkers.

“My first and major concern is people not stopping at pedestrian crosswalks in the middle of the road,“ explained Paterniti. “In the City of Jamestown, there are probably eight to ten crosswalks in the middle of the road with a yellow sign, thinking people are going to stop.”

Other problem areas she sees include people running stop signs, poorly visible traffic signs, and crosswalk negligence. All problems that could lead to more bodily harm. 

“Do we just have to wait for one more person to die,“ says Paterniti. “Several people have died, one person died where there is now a crosswalk on Washington street.”  

Fixes for the safety problems could range from a variety of options. From new advanced signage to alert drivers of pedestrian crossing, to even more drastic steps, for areas like the intersection of Buffalo and Second streets which sees a lot of traffic. 

“As much as people hate roundabouts, they are fantastic,“ stated Paterniti. “And I think that would be a great intersection to slow down traffic, because it’s a raceway. People race up and down that street everyday, people come from Buffalo, people don’t stop, people don’t turn right on red.”  

In response to the ever growing cases of motor vehicle accidents that lead to individuals getting hurt or killed, city officials are looking at implementing a program called Vision Zero which aims at traffic safety. 

“It takes a kind of a new approach,“ explained Zachary Altschuler. “Really reorienting towards traffic death being preventable versus inevitable. Recognizing that humans are going to fail, that people are obviously going to make mistakes.” 

In the end, if implemented by the city the program would only start out its planning phase, looking at how to prevent traffic related deaths.


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