In every city, it seems like there is always a road and intersection that is the main thoroughfare traversed by drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists. Unfortunately, these same heavily traveled intersections are frequently the scenes of accidents caused by speeders and red light runners.
If you live in Manatee County, a dangerous and busy intersection has probably already entered your mind. Lakewood Ranch Boulevard and Parkside Place in Bradenton has once again been the scene of a fatal accident. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a red light runner hit two bicyclists—a husband and wife—crossing the intersection on a green light. Sadly, the male cyclist died as a result of the serious injuries he suffered in the crash, and his wife is recovering from her injuries.
This fatal bike crash has now sparked a discussion about whether or not drivers in the area are following the road rules. While the speed limit is 35 miles per hour on Lakewood Ranch Boulevard, it seems as if all drivers are disregarding the speed limit on this road. Now, several supervisors of Community Development have asked Inter-District Authority to inspect all intersections along Lakewood Ranch from the Summerfield off State Road 70, down to University Parkway. This investigation will determine if signal light upgrades need to be made and if left-turn arrows need to be added.
This bicycle fatality definitely raises concerns about the roadway’s safety, as it marks the second bicycle accident at this intersection in 2014. Also, there were five accidents in the same location in 2013, according to data from the Florida Highway Patrol. In light of these statistics, bicyclists need to cross the streets carefully, and drivers who travel through this intersection need to do a better job of watching out for bicyclists and pedestrians.
At Mallard Perez, we ask you to do your part in saving a life. Please watch for bicyclists and pedestrians while driving in the area, and share this message with others you know on Facebook to help bring awareness to this issue.