Our Treasure Coast personal injury attorneys have continually warned residents about the dangers faced by pedestrians in our area. In fact, a recent report found Florida pedestrians are at greater risk of being struck by a vehicle than pedestrians in any other state. Now, however, Fort Pierce pedestrians may get a break with a plan to redesign a congested intersection.

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is working with Fort Pierce’s City Commission to fund a project that would ease congestion around the new federal courthouse across from City Hall. According to TCPalm, the area around Orange Avenue has seen an increase in pedestrian traffic and congestion since the new courthouse opened. TCPalm reports that pedestrians have to rush to beat the lights when crossing the street and that there is no safe way across the street at times when traffic is heaviest.

According to TCPalm, the road improvement plan includes creating a left-turn lane onto Orange Avenue westbound, retiming the signals, and creating an exclusive pedestrian crossing to permit even diagonal crossing.

The project, if approved by FDOT, will be funded in 2015. The city must submit a formal request to FDOT for the project. The next steps require the city to solicit public feedback, re-evaluate the project and approve conceptual plans.

Safety for All Who Share the Road

A national initiative run by the National Complete Streets Coalition encourages municipalities to take into account the safety of all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, and public transportation riders, when designing roadways. While the changes in Fort Pierce may not have been a direct result of this campaign, the modifications meet the Coalition’s desire to have all modes of transportation – including walking – capable of safely sharing the roadways.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that more than 4,000 pedestrians die in motor vehicle accidents nationwide each year. In Florida, 499 pedestrians lost their lives and 7,290 were injured after being struck by vehicles in 2010.

Our Florida accident attorneys applaud the Fort Pierce City Commission members for undertaking this important safety improvement project. We also urge all drivers to stay fully alert. When traveling through towns it is especially important to remain aware of people stepping off sidewalks and dashing across streets.

About Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney

The law firm of Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney, has provided professional and compassionate legal assistance to personal injury and accident victims in South Florida and the Treasure Coast since 1975. The firm’s practice areas include car accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, product liability, dog bite injuries, swimming pool accidents, slip and fall injuries, medical malpractice, and wrongful death claims.

Our law firm represents victims of car accidents across South Florida, including Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, Jupiter, Stuart, Okeechobee, Vero Beach, Palm Beach, and throughout South Florida and the Treasure Coast. Call 1-800-299-8878 now to speak with a knowledgeable Florida car accident attorney or fill out our online contact form.