85ºF

Community voices concerns over crosswalk after woman hit and killed by car

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A Jacksonville councilman is responding to safety concerns after a young woman was hit while crossing Shad Road and Philips Highway.

The accident happened Saturday night and the young woman remains in critical condition fighting for her life.

People are calling the intersection dangerous.  

"Busy, very busy. All the time," said Allen Martin.  

Martin doesn't live far from the busy intersection of Shad Road and Philips Highway. He said the intersection is both busy and dangerous.

"It’s dangerous, it’s one of the dangerous ones to crossover walking," said Martin.  

The intersection is also where a young woman was hit while crossing the road Saturday night.

Witnesses said she was trying to get to the bus stop.

"My heart fell to my feet because it’s too close to home," said Martin.

Martin said the problem is people speed through the intersection and the lack of crosswalks for pedestrian traffic to cross over from Shad Road to Philips Highway.

"They do coming flying through here all the time," said Martin.  

Pedestrians are protected if they're crossing over on Shad Road because there is a crosswalk, but for anyone that’s trying to get to the bus stop on the other side of the road going northbound, there isn’t a crosswalk.

"There needs to be a crosswalk safely for the people with a button and a counter so they know how much time to cross the street," said Martin.  

Council member Matt Schellenberg said he’s very familiar with the intersection, since he lives nearby.  

"There’s certain things that me and all the future council districts can do, they can look at this intersection to see if there needs to be a timer there or something to make it safer for people to walk back and forth from one side of the street to another especially a busy street like that," said Schellenberg.

Martin is hoping something changes soon.

"Give them the opportunity to cross where it’s safe to do so," said Martin.

 Councilman Schellenberg said this is something simple the council can look into and he'll be checking this week.

It's still unclear how many accidents have occurred at this intersection but News4Jax requested the numbers from both Florida Highway Patrol and The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office.

A JSO traffic safety report shows from 2012 to 2017, one in four traffic deaths involved pedestrians and pedestrian-related traffic homicides accounted for more than 26 percent of all traffic homicides.

Those tragedies are the reason Councilman Matt Schellenberg advocates for crosswalks.

"That’s something I’ve been an advocate for and hopefully my predecessor would do the same and I hope everybody on the city council would recognize these are very important issues for all the citizens of Jacksonville not just these ones because of safety," said Schellenberg.

Martin said he wants to push local leaders into doing something.

"Get my neighbors to get together and see if we can get something done about it," said Allen.

Schellenberg said there is already a huge need for more crosswalks throughout the city, but residents can contact their state representatives and senators to talk to them about the issue.