BikeWalkLee and other county staff participated in Monday's FDOT Roundtable on bike/ped safety.
FDOT Safety Office personnel and Cambridge Consulting, along with District 1 staff, facilitated the 3+ hour discussion intended to gather input to be used in the development of the bike/ped safety plan element of the Strategic Highway Safety Plan. Specifically, the purpose of the roundtable was to “identify appropriate countermeasures to eliminate pedestrian and bicyclist injuries and fatalities.”
Based on results of a recent National Highway Safety Administration (NHSTA) bike/ped safety audit, ten counties with the highest rates of bike/ped crashes, injuries, and fatalities will be targeted for extra outreach and awareness efforts. In his opening remarks, Billy Hattaway, District 1 Secretary and FDOT’s point-person for bike/ped matters, acknowledged Florida’s dismal record and referred to the Dangerous by Design report as yet more evidence of the problem.
In attendance from Southwest Florida were representatives from BikeWalkLee, Florida Bicycle Association, Lee County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Division, Lee County Metropolitan Planning Organization, Naples Pathway Coalition, Collier County Metropolitan Planning Organization, and Charlotte County. A number of others individuals and agencies from the 12-county District 1 jurisdiction were also represented.
The roundtable generated quite a number of good ideas – including best practices and examples of what’s being done in local communities – although anyone who’s been involved with bike/ped and traffic safety for a while no doubt had a feeling of “de je vu”. None the less, it’s encouraging that FDOT is undertaking this effort once again, especially with Billy Hattaway and his boss, FDOT Secretary Ananth Prasad, are committed to improving overall traffic safety, with bike/ped being the highest priority.
For more about the meeting and overall effort please contact Dan Moser at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Report by Dan Moser