New Technology in Naples Working to Protect Pedestrians

There’s brand new technology in Naples that’s working to better protect pedestrians.

It’s been installed at the intersection of Bayshore and Weeks Avenue. That intersection has been deemed one of the most dangerous in the area. Many residents say that there’s an accident at that intersection every single day. Officials are hoping that won’t be the case any longer with the new HAWK system, according to NBC2.

“Almost impossible to walk across this street, you take your life into your hands when you do it,” said Naples resident Neil Keane.

Our Naples pedestrian accident lawyers understand the problems on-foot travelers face, especially in Collier County. There are many areas of the city where walking is one of the most convenient ways to get around. Unfortunately, many areas are less fortunate and it just takes one inattentive driver to cause a tragedy. With the new HAWK system, city officials are hoping to draw more attention to pedestrians and bicyclists. Florida continues to be the most dangerous in the country for these kinds of accidents. With the New Year, drivers need to renew their attention and focus, particularly in areas identified as hazardous.

When the system flashes a red light, drivers are supposed to stop and check for pedestrians before crossing through the intersection. The light remains yellow until it’s activated by a pedestrian. Local law enforcement officers are keeping an eye on the new HAWK system and they’re also increasing patrol in the area to make sure drivers are stopping.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were more than 4,250 pedestrians killed in traffic accidents across the country in 2010. This is a 5 percent increase from the previous year. There were also another 70,000 who were injured in these same incidents. In the state of Florida, there were close to 2,500 people who were killed in traffic accidents throughout the year. Close to 500 of these fatalities were of pedestrians involved in traffic accidents. That’s about 20 percent of all of the recorded traffic fatalities. We had the highest rate of pedestrian fatalities per 100,000 population.

And it’s not looking like it’s going to get better any time soon. Recent statistics show that there were increases in pedestrian deaths in both 2011 and 2012.

It’s so bad, that Florida holds the first 4 of the top 5 most dangerous metro areas in the country, according to Transportation for America. From 2000 to 2009, there were more than 5,000 pedestrians who were killed in traffic accidents in the Sunshine State. During this time, Collier County saw more than 50 pedestrian fatalities. These pedestrian fatalities accounted for more than 9 percent of all traffic deaths reported in the area over the time.

Drivers are asked to be cautious and aware of the new HAWK system and to watch for pedestrians in the area. These travelers have rights to our roadways and those rights deserve to be recognized. Not only is it considerate, but it’s the law, too! Help to keep our pedestrians safe and be extra cautious at crosswalks!