The City of Montreal is under pressure to install crossing lights at a number of busy intersections following the death of Huguette Bergeron on Tuesday.
Bergeron, 77, died after being hit and pinned under a truck as it turned left on a green light at the intersection of Bélanger Street and Châteaubriand Avenue in the Rosemont – La Petite-Patrie borough.
The truck driver claimed not to have seen Bergeron and a 71-year-old woman crossing the intersection.
The other woman suffered a serious head injury.
Seventy-year-old Huguette David was friends with Bergeron. She told CBC News that traffic lights don’t give elderly pedestrians enough time to get across intersections.
“The light is too fast,” she said.
Jennifer Srey has been campaigning for a light at a busy intersection nearby, where her sister-in-law, Sayam Srey, was killed after being hit by a city bus while crossing the street last year.
She says the city vowed to install new lights at the intersection by early spring, but that has yet to happen.
Rosemont – La Petite-Patrie Mayor François Croteau believes the deaths of Bergeron and Srey could have been prevented if the intersections had crossing lights.
He said he’s been pressing for improvements but the city has been slow to move.
“We’ve been asking the City of Montreal for four years to put pedestrian lights on every corner or at least places that are dangerous for pedestrians to give them time to cross the street,” he said.
“We ask again and again and there’s still no pedestrian light.”
The City of Montreal has plans to install 2,000 new traffic lights by 2017.
The city executive committee member responsible for transportation, Aref Salem, says the city is doing what it can with the funds that it has available.
“The problem is money,” he said. “We cannot change the whole city in two days. The city was built the way it is today and with the program, with our capacity of paying, we're going to do them all before 2017.