West Edmonton residents call for speed limit review after pedestrian struck and killed
'It just hits so close to home, it could have easily been me.'
Residents of a west Edmonton neighbourhood where a woman and her dog were struck and killed Saturday say speeding motorists are a problem in the area.
The woman, 57, and her dog were struck in a marked crosswalk at Suder Greens Drive between Lewis Estates Boulevard and Potter Greens Drive around 7 p.m. Alcohol is not considered a factor in the collision, but police are investigating whether speed played a role.
Donna Zawaski stopped by the scene of the collision Sunday morning to lay a bouquet of purple flowers from her garden alongside a growing memorial.
"It just hits so close to home, it could have easily been me," Zawaski said. "It's really heartbreaking."
She said she was woken up early Sunday morning by another speeding vehicle. She said she would be complaining to police about speeding issues in the area later Sunday.
She said speeding vehicles are an ongoing issue in her neighbourhood.
"We talk about it daily — it was just a matter of time," she said.
The posted speed limit on Suder Greens Drive is 50 km/h.
Lack of signage a problem, resident says
Collette Funk-Ross lives in the neighbourhood and said part of the problem is a lack of stop signs and posted speed limits. The only sign on Suder Greens Drive is at least 500 metres away from the crosswalk, she said.
Zawaski said the neighbourhood held an informal meeting two weeks ago to discuss issues to bring to the city's attention. Nothing official has yet been drafted by the community, but she said it's in the works.
Funk-Ross said her best advice to drivers and pedestrians is to make eye contact before crossing the road. That way, she said, future accidents may be prevented.
"It doesn't matter if those drivers were right or wrong, their lives are impacted forever now," she said.
'More work to do' in residential areas
A traffic safety event was hosted Saturday by Vision Zero, a group of Edmontonians campaigning for zero traffic fatalities on city streets.
The run, walk or cycle event at Concordia University of Edmonton drew over 100 people.
Among the participants was city councillor Dave Loken, who spoke briefly at the event about the fatality Saturday night.
"People are slowing down in other parts of the city, but I think we have a lot more work to do in our neighbourhoods," he said.
According to a report from the city, there were 292 collisions with pedestrians last year, down from 316 in 2015.
In 2016, 10 pedestrians died from collisions with vehicles. In 2015, 12 people died.
210 of the pedestrian collisions in 2016 involved pedestrians who had the right of way while crossing the street.
According to the city, the lower number of deaths in 2016 is partly due to the adoption of the Edmonton Road Safety Strategy. Adopted in 2015, the strategy makes changes to the infrastructure and education around speeding in residential streets.
The city's urban planning committee announced in April it would be asking council to approve a city-wide traffic management policy.
If approved, the policy would include methods of reducing speed limits to 30 km/h in residential neighbourhoods.