Latest pedestrian accident raises concerns about Rte. 6 crosswalk

Jun 5, 2019

Following yet another incident of a pedestrian being struck by a car while crossing Marion Road near Swifts Beach Road, selectmen and Chief John Walcek think that something needs to change.

At 3:41 p.m. on Monday, June 3, Wareham Police found that a 16-year-old girl had been struck while crossing Marion Road. The girl was using the crosswalk when a car stopped for her. The car in the passing lane did not stop, and struck her.

The victim was transported to Tobey Hospital. The operator of the vehicle, a Wareham resident, was cited for failure to stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk.

The crosswalk, across four lanes of traffic, is not served by a traffic light or a light that flashes to stop cars.

In a memo to the Board, Walcek wrote that this is the third such accident since December 2018. On March 4, a 48-year-old Wareham resident was injured in a hit-and-run at the same location.

All the pedestrians injured were crossing the street legally on the crosswalk.

So far, no one has been critically injured.

“A very serious and potentially fatal incident is possible at that crosswalk,” wrote Chief Walcek, who cited the speed of vehicles and the lay-out of the road as risk factors.

Walcek reported that he has reached out to the Massachusetts Department of Transportation and an employee is making studies of the area.

Town Administrator Derek Sullivan said that he has considered removing the crosswalk as he thinks it is too dangerous.

“Us allowing people to cross there, it seems like we’re inviting disaster,” Sullivan said.

Past traffic studies have claimed that no light is necessary at that intersection, but officials want to reconsider that decision.

Even if there is no traffic light, a flashing light, or light-up pedestrian signs could improve safety in the area.

The Selectmen voted to send a letter to Mass DOT expressing concern.

“We need to go full court press on this,” said Sullivan.