South Jersey’s Deadliest Highway for Pedestrians
Called South Jersey’s “deadliest” highway, Route 130 has claimed the lives of twenty-four people walking along or crossing the heavily-trafficked highway. The Tri-State Transportation Campaign named one busy section of Route 130 in Burlington County the state’s most dangerous road for pedestrians for six years.
Now several agencies, including the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, are advocating for safety improvements to protect the drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists who travel the mostly six-lane highway running through the densely-populated region.
Dangers Facing Pedestrians
Though hundreds of pedestrians and bicyclists use the road every day, Route 130 was not designed with the infrastructure to support foot or bicycle traffic. Several schools and bus stops line Route 130, but the people walking to and from them are not protected.
Crosswalks, sidewalks, and shoulders are available in some but not all sections, forcing pedestrians onto the highway and into the path of drivers who may or may not be paying attention. Drivers who are unaware they are required to stop for pedestrians frequently blow by parents and children walking to and from school.
Because some sections of Route 130 stretch across six lanes, pedestrians hurry to get across as they dodge cars turning from busy cross streets. Roughly 45,000 vehicles travel the busiest sections of Route 130 every day.
Suggested Improvements to Save Lives
Along with the Delaware Valley Planning Commission, lawmakers and other private agencies have offered many different solutions to make Route 130 safe for everyone. Proposed safety improvements include:
- Aggressive enforcement of speed limits
- Bike lanes where space allows
- Countdown pedestrian crossing signals
- Reducing lanes from six to four in some sections
- Sidewalks along the entire Route 130 corridor
- Signage to increase awareness of pedestrians and cyclists
- Warning signals to slow traffic in school zones
25 Saves Lives Campaign
One tragic loss has inspired the efforts of one South Jersey community’s push for safety improvements along Route 130. In May 2016, a 17-year-old high school student was walking on the sidewalk along Route 130 near Burlington City High School with a friend when a drunk driver jumped the curb and struck him. Tragically, the boy died at the scene.
Students at the school he attended joined with Senator Diane Allen (R) to launch the 25 Saves Lives campaign, a push for a permanently-reduced speed limit in all school zones. Their effort evolved into a bill named for the teen, which has already passed the Senate Transportation Committee and is ready to go to the State Senate for a vote.
Ultimately, the state’s department of transportation determines what will be done to improve pedestrian safety. Some changes are scheduled for the next few months while others are still a few years out.
Responsible pedestrians who obey traffic signals and utilize crosswalks and sidewalks are still at the mercy of careless or distracted drivers. Pedestrians involved in an accident with a vehicle can suffer serious, debilitating injuries. By pursuing a personal injury lawsuit, victims may recover needed compensation to ease the burden of costly medical expenses, lost wages, and loss of future earning potential among other damages.
South Jersey Car Accident Lawyers at Folkman Law Offices, P.C. Fight for Injured Pedestrians
We focus on the crucial details necessary for obtaining the compensation you need to rebuild your life so you can focus on your rehabilitation. To schedule a free case review with a compassionate and knowledgeable South Jersey car accident lawyer, call 856-354-9444 or contact us online today. Folkman Law Offices, P.C. has three locations in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, Philadelphia, and King of Prussia, Pennsylvania for your convenience.