Easton officials to study safety after fatal pedestrian accident

Traffic safety authorities in Easton, Massachusetts, are calling for an official study to determine what measures can be made to make Summer Street safer. Unfortunately, the effort to increase safety on the roads was prompted by a tragic fatal accident on the sharply-curved street. A 71-year-old man was walking his dog Monday morning when he was struck by a car.

Authorities say that a 17-year-old kid lost control of his vehicle while heading down Summer Street. The car struck both the pedestrian and his dog before the car slammed into a utility pole and a tree alongside the street. The pedestrian and his dog each died as a result of the accident.

The teen driver is accused of negligence, speeding and failing to stay in his lane in the fatal accident. Authorities say that the young man had attended a 6:00 a.m. football practice before heading down Summer Street. Law enforcement is looking into what happened surrounding the fatal wreck. Authorities are poring over the pedestrian accident scene for clues and also plan to investigate whether or not the teen driver may have been using his cellphone or texting around the time that he lost control of the car.

Last year, neighbors pulled a driver from a burning car that had crashed in the same area as Monday’s fatal pedestrian accident. Authorities say that speeding on the curvy road was involved in that prior serious crash. The speed limit on that road is 30 miles per hour, but Enterprise News reports that the speed limit is not posted.

The Traffic Safety Committee in Easton, which is comprised of the Department of Public Works superintendant, the chief of police and a fire captain, are calling for a study of the area to improve safety. The committee will be reviewing recommendations from that study to be considered along with the results of official reports from Monday’s accident in analyzing what can be done to improve road safety.

While investigators probe the facts and safety experts seek to improve safety, the story shows that it does not take a high-speed highway crash to shatter lives. An idyllic morning walk with the dog can be shattered, along with the lives of families, if a driver loses control of a car and strikes a pedestrian.

Source: Enterprise News, "Easton looks to make Summer Street safer after fatal crash," Jennifer Bray, Sept. 5, 2013