City report recommends changes to St. Vital intersection where boy was killed
Surafiel Musse Tesfamariam was using a crosswalk on St. Anne’s and Varennes Avenue with his mother and siblings the morning of Feb. 13 when he was hit by a truck.
A city hall committee was asked to review concerns surrounding the crosswalk as part of a traffic study of St. Anne’s Road.
The study has been completed and will be discussed at the Standing Policy Committee on Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works meeting June 26.
One of the recommendations includes the installation of low-mounted flashers which would increase pedestrian visibility. These signs would be installed at the same height as pedestrian crosswalk signs and would flash at the same rate as the overhead crosswalk lights.
The flashers will be installed at pedestrian corridor locations around the city as part of a trial this summer and fall. These would cost $500 to install.
The report also recommends studying the usage of Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons (RRFBs), two rectangular lights at a driver’s eye level which would flash at a more rapid pace (similar to emergency vehicles). If installed, these would cost $40,000.
A request for several trees to be pruned near the intersection is also in the report, which would improve the visibility of overhead crosswalk signs when travelling south.
The report found there is no need for traffic control signals and no need to change the 60 kilometre an hour speed limit at the intersection.
Calls for change
St. Vital city councillor Brian Mayes told Global News calls poured in for changes after the incident.
“I’ve been a councillor for six and a half years,” Mayes said. “This generated more calls and emails than just about any other issue.”
Tesfamariam’s mother also called for change after the death of her son.
“I hope everyone should drive carefully and slowly,” Adiam Weldeyohannes said.
“I hope the government or anyone responsible will do something about the place.”
The estimated cost to implement the recommendations is $41,900.
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