Traffic circles cause disabled grief
New traffic circles in Winnipeg are causing grief for yet another group of people.
The Manitoba League of Persons with Disabilities says people who are visually impaired have trouble crossing intersections with traffic circles.
The first time Tracy Garbutt, who is visually impaired, tried to cross an intersection with one of the new circles in place, his guide dog hesitated and he had to depend on his other senses to get him across safely.
"People were trying to wave me on but I couldn't see them waving at me. I could hear something, but you don't know when to go," he said.
"It was a nightmare. I was really unsure and so was my dog. We weren't comfortable in the situation and that can cause a problem right there that can cause an accident or someone getting hurt."
The circular,concrete structures, in the the middle of some intersections were constructed this summer and fall.
They have raised the ire of many residents in the neighbourhoods where they have been built. They have expressed worry they may obstruct emergency vehicles, buses and city crews that clear snow.
But others, such as city Coun. John Orlikow, has defended the circles, saying residents previously complained about speeding motorists along the street and the circles are an effective way to slow down those lead-footed drivers.
The city has developed a website to show the public where the traffic circles will be placed.