, Salem, MA

Local News

February 13, 2013

Lowell Street light urged

Peabody: Meeting called to discuss safety after fatal accident outside church


“People are very impatient,” Ward Councilor Barry Sinewitz said.

If a light is installed, he worried, pedestrians will push the button and then ignore it, rushing across the street at the first break in the traffic.

“We have to be more concerned with distracted drivers,” resident Colleen Derrivan said, referencing the texting craze. “All our kids are addicted to it.”

She recalled seeing an elderly driver passing as he held a cellphone over the steering wheel and attempted to punch in a phone number.

Crossing at St. Adelaide’s, she said, “I myself have been nearly hit three times.” Finally, she pointed out that Buttner was hit as he crossed the road all by himself.

Former City Councilor Edward Quinn reviewed trying to get a pedestrian light installed during his tenure in the mid-1990s. This followed an accident where two people were hurt. But the effort to put in a light was stymied by the state, Quinn said.

Mayor Ted Bettencourt, a parishioner himself, replied, “I’m pretty confident that there’s some action we can take. We don’t have to wait for state approval. ... Something is going to happen here. I know Councilor Sinewitz is all over this.”

What should be done exactly, he said after the meeting, is yet to be determined.

Sinewitz told the group that he plans to place the problem before a City Council subcommittee at tomorrow’s meeting. “I think at this point it is going to take a little time. I know you don’t want to hear that.”

DeRosa pointed out that signage in the area has already been increased, police are more actively patrolling it, particularly during the times that people attend Mass. He said a trailer that cautions drivers electronically when their speed becomes excessive could be put there when the weather improves.

“It runs on solar power,” he said.

Also attending the meeting were Councilors Mike Garabedian, Tom Gould, Arthur Athas, Anne Manning-Martin and Barry Osborne.




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