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Letter: Blame for deaths on dangerous roads

East Main Street in Smithtown is shown on

East Main Street in Smithtown is shown on Feb. 5, 2014. Jericho Turnpike in Suffolk County has bypassed Hempstead Turnpike, another Long Island stretch, as the metropolitan area's deadliest road for pedestrians, a new report shows. Credit: Ed Betz

Regarding “Route 25 in Suffolk most dangerous for walking” , the reason so many fatalities occur along Long Island’s roadways is lack of respect for pedestrians’ rights and safety by drivers and local governments.

Drivers exceed speed limits, talk on cell phones, text and are more distracted than ever. Local governments and police contribute to this problem by not strictly enforcing rules about yielding to pedestrians. Officials fail to properly maintain the crossing signal buttons at intersections.

Jaywalking by pedestrians is another problem. So you see, there’s plenty of blame to go around.

Ronald Gendron

Editor’s note: The writer is a retired SUNY police officer.


I believe Newsday is doing a disservice to readers by publishing information about the “most dangerous” roads.

Broad publication of a report on dangers to pedestrians can lead to undue public outrage and unnecessary influence on localities and the state to overspend.

As Newsday acknowledges, the report does not factor in the length of the road, traffic volume or the specifics of the deaths that occurred. This makes the information almost meaningless.

Significant taxpayer money has been spent “upgrading” existing crosswalks. If people do not use the crosswalks properly, the latest technology will not help.

Any unnecessary death is a tragedy, but some of the pedestrian deaths are self-inflicted.

Jeff Schwarz


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