MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. (WDVM)– Pedestrian safety is a growing concern in Montgomery county. Two pedestrians were killed within 24 hours on Rockville pike.
“I ride a bike, I’ve been hit 5 times. People are in a hurry they don’t care,” said another resident, Chris Riche.
Last year there were over 500 pedestrian and bicyclist-involved accidents amounting to 14 deaths in Montgomery county. This year the county has already had 3 pedestrian deaths, 2 of them within 24 hours of each other.
“We got some bad drivers out here that’s another thing a lot of people just don’t care about people crossing the street and a lot of the pedestrians won’t care about other drivers and its just sad,” said resident Deandre Cooper.
Several councilmembers have expressed their concerns with the growing number of pedestrian deaths including council member Evan Glass.
“It’s a big issue both ways with drivers and pedestrians and I see a lot of people with headphones on in the car and walking, so I don’t know how you can use all your senses and be aware of what’s around you in either situation I think that is a major issue,” said resident Jeffrey White.
This is an ongoing issue Montgomery county officials have been trying to combat. In November of last year, county officials held a month-long campaign called “Be safe Be seen” to educate drivers and pedestrians about the importance of being aware.
County Executive Marc Elrich has also recently announced a $266 million investment in the Vision Zero programs to help reduce the number of pedestrian deaths.
WDVM Reporter Erica Huckaby reached out to the Maryland department of transportation and they said in a statement, “The Maryland department of transportation (MDOT) knows that motor vehicle crashes have tragic consequences and a profound effect on families and communities. MDOT is committed to working with local leaders, citizens and organizations in Montgomery County and across the state to help realize Maryland’s Vision Zero goal to eliminate traffic-related deaths. Over the last decade, Maryland has averaged more than 500 fatalities – including more than 100 pedestrians – and thousands of injuries each year as the result of motor vehicle crashes.”
The Montgomery County council has announced that they will be holding a meeting Tuesday, January 28 to discuss pedestrian and bicyclist safety.