The National Roads Authority (NRA) says it is time to rethink how and for whom Cayman’s roads have been built for. The decision is part of a wider push to build what the NRA calls complete roads.
NRA Transportation Planner Marion Pandohie said, “In the past, we have been seen just to build roads, but now we are trying to accommodate pedestrians motorists.”
Police statistics reveal that 56 lives were claimed on Cayman’s roads in fatal accidents during the last decade, some 8 of those victims were pedestrians or cyclists. Now a renewed push for safer roads sees pedestrian crossings and flashing lights popping up all across George Town. Ms. Pandohie said those newly installed pedestrian crossings are helping make Cayman’s roads safer.
“In order to accommodate pedestrians in localised areas such as George Town, in lower speed areas, we are putting down pedestrian crossing so people will have safe places to cross the road,” she said.
But the crossings aren’t to everyone’s liking.
Some people have taken to social media to express their worries that the new crossings could actually lead to more accidents. But Ms. Pandohie said the new crossings were installed in places where people are already crossing the road, and now with the assistance of the crossings, they can traverse safer.
She said, “We put the pedestrian crossing in known locations where people do cross the road, so they now have a safe place to do so.”
Ms. Pandohie said she is hoping the new crossings will see less fatal accidents on Cayman’s roads. But if they are to work cyclists and pedestrians must also play their part.
“You [drivers] are not expected to stop or slam on our brakes, cars don’t stop on a dime,” she said, “Pedestrians have to follow the road rules as well, they have to stop look both ways and then cross.”
Ms. Pandohie said crossings play a small, but crucial role in making Cayman’s roads safer and more are to be installed in the near future.