Following a tragic car accident that occurred on Wednesday in Foggy Bottom, a local governing body ordered that the District Department of Transportation provide an explanation as to what may have caused the accident hours later on Wednesday night.
In a unanimous vote, the Foggy Bottom and West End Advisory Neighborhood Commission approved a resolution that requests that city officials investigate the possibility that there were problems with the traffic signal at the intersection of 21st Street and I Street at the time that the fatal accident occurred on Wednesday.
Shawn O’Donnell, age forty, was riding his bicycle alongside a Mack truck when the driver turned into I Street outside of Lafayette Hall. The driver of the truck struck and killed O’Donnell, who was biking alongside the truck.
Officials also decided to back a bill that would give permanent residents who are not yet citizens the ability to vote in local elections and supported a resolution that requested DDOT to improve safety measures on Virginia Avenue.
The resolution was introduced by Commissioner Yannik Omictin, and it was later approved by the ANC. The resolution requests that DDOT Director Everett Lott provide an explanation regarding the factors that contributed to the collision that took place on Wednesday at the intersection of 21st Street and I Street.
A constituent who was present at the meeting asked that, prior to the ANC hearing the resolution, the commissioners observe a minute of silence in remembrance of the victim that lasted for thirty seconds. The commissioners took part in the moment of silence.
The city’s operation of the traffic signals is called into doubt since, according to the commissioners, the lights of the traffic signal at the intersection were not visible at the time of the crash but appeared to be functional immediately afterward.
The resolution requests that DDOT provide an update regarding the installation and activation of the traffic signal at the intersection. This signal has the potential to prevent deadly car accidents like the one that occurred on Wednesday.
Omictin stated that the commissioners are “sick and weary” of the deaths of their people due to traffic accidents that could have been avoided, and he asked for a special meeting to debate the topic on August 8.
Next week, Commissioner Trupti Patel has requested that she and the other commissioners conduct a tour of the intersection to investigate the possible factors that led to the tragedy.
Patel remarked in the course of the gathering, “This is incredibly difficult, so I really want to make sure that we go very cautiously and properly.” In order to make sure that we have all of the answers to this, I do believe that we need to be as aggressive as we possibly can.
ANC Asks DDOT To Explain Traffic Signal Faults
During the current installation of a protected bike lane on Virginia Avenue, the ANC passed a motion to recommend that the District Department of Transportation address concerns regarding the safety of pedestrians and drivers along various intersections along that street.
The commissioners have requested a shortened schedule for the completion of the project, which will involve the installation of traffic signals at the intersection of G Street and an assessment by the DDOT of the conditions that pedestrians face at the avenue’s intersections. Read about Ernest Khalimov Death
Additionally, the resolution suggests extending the hours that pedestrians are allowed to cross New Hampshire Avenue at the junctions of 25th and 27th Streets.
Because of the city’s haste to finish the protected bike lane, the chair of the ANC, Commissioner Joel Causey, stated that the protected bike lane project was not “fully thought-out” in a way that could accommodate pedestrians with varying degrees of mobility.
This was due to the fact that the city was in a hurry to finish the protected bike lane. He cited the lack of “refuge islands,” which create space for a pedestrian stopgap in the middle of a wide intersection, as an example of the city’s failure to fully furnish the avenue with appropriate protections for locals such as elderly residents.
These islands create space for a pedestrian stopgap in the middle of a wide intersection.
“I believe that in their haste to get the bike lanes in and claim triumph for bike lanes, they failed to grasp that we have constituents who are senior,” Causey said. “I believe that they failed to comprehend that we have constituents who are elderly.”