Concerned Tampa business owners and residents near the intersection of Waters Avenue and Grady Avenue contacted the Road Warrior for help in making their area safer for pedestrians.
Charles Peterson and his service dog Jake cross W. Waters Avenue every day to get to Walmart - sometimes twice - and "A Universal Pawn and Loan" co-owner Bill Pendlebury is terrified that they are going to get hit by a car.
"They take their life in their hands every time they cross the street," he said.
Bill thought he remembered there was once a traffic signal at Waters Avenue and Grady Avenue, but county engineers say that was never the case. There is currently a raised median with limited turn lanes dividing six lanes of traffic.
"It shouldn't be this way. The county should do something about it," Bill says.
Tampa's Armdale Fire Station is on Grady Avenue, about 100 yards off Waters. Because of the raised median, firefighters are forced to travel north on Grady, then east on Humphrey to get out to Dale Mabry Highway. During rush hour, Humphrey Street backs up, with traffic avoiding Waters Avenue to access Dale Mabry.
Response times would go down if there was a full-out traffic signal at the intersection, but Bill and Charlie would settle for a crosswalk.
"There's some engineering that needs to be addressed," Charlie says, "and some things I feel like could be done better."
The Road Warrior addresses the concerns of Tampa pedestrians and business owners at the corner of W. Waters Ave. and Grady Ave. in Hillsborough County. WTSP
It turns out Hillsborough County assessed this intersection in December of 2012, based on conditions like pedestrian volumes, the number and type of accidents at the intersection and sight distances. The pedestrian count fell short of the necessary numbers.
County engineers also referenced an FDOT policy against putting uncontrolled crosswalks at roads with more than four lanes; W. Waters Avenue has six, so the only option would be a traffic signal.
According to a county representative, the last pedestrian fatality at this intersection was in 2010 and due to a number of factors, a crosswalk at Dale Mabry Highway was ascertained to be the safest... albeit not the most convenient.
But we asked 10 News viewers what should be done about pedestrian safety on major roads, and we received one email about increasing pedestrian education but also "an overall reduction in speed limits."
We want to know what you think: should the speed limit on Hillsborough County's major roads be decreased, and do those major roads need more traffic signals and crosswalks?
Post your comments on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/wtsp10news or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.