We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: A solution is urgently needed to allow pedestrians to safely cross the four-lane James Walter Francis Drive.
Last week, another young child was struck by a vehicle on a section of the road near the Festival Village Grounds.
Thankfully, the girl’s injuries were not life-threatening. The next victim, however, might not be so lucky.
And make no mistake: If no action is taken, there will be more victims, and probably sooner rather than later.
Currently, there is only one designated crosswalk — the one at Station Avenue — between the Road Town and Port Purcell roundabouts, a one-mile stretch that hundreds of primary and high school students traverse on a daily basis.
Moreover, the crossing system at the Road Town roundabout is unsafe: Traffic experts recommend that crosswalks be set back from a roundabout instead of abutting it.
Moving forward, there are various options, none of which is terribly complicated or expensive. Two or three raised crosswalks, for example, would go a long way, as would safely designed crossings at both roundabouts and at the traffic lights in front of Wickhams Cay II.
Given the simplicity of such solutions, the current lack of basic pedestrian accommodations is shameful.
Besides children, tourists are at an increased risk since they are likely to be unfamiliar with the area and many of them come from countries where vehicles drive on the right side of the road.
This is to say nothing of disabled pedestrians, many of whom effectively have no hope of crossing the highway.
The dearth of crosswalks on the James Walter Francis Drive is symptomatic of a larger problem in a territory where an egregious lack of planning means that pedestrians in most populated areas face dangers that are unnecessary and unacceptable in this day and age.
Effectively tackling such issues is quite literally a matter of life and death.