As the result of a traffic accident earlier this year that injured a graduate student as she was trying to the cross the street, the University of Massachusetts is renewing its focus on pedestrian safety on campus. The ongoing efforts include adding new warnings for motorists and pedestrians on Massachusetts Avenue, which were implemented in November.
Work crews added “PED XING” lettering on the westbound side of Massachusetts Avenue and temporary grooved sections of pavement. These “rumble strips” are aimed at warning drivers as they cross the east and westbound lanes near crosswalks.
Also as a result of the pedestrian accident, the UMass Police Department has ramped up its educational efforts. They distributed door hangers and pamphlets throughout campus building to remind visitors and employees of pedestrian safety. Plainclothes officers are also enforcing traffic laws along Massachusetts Avenue and crossing guards have become a regular feature along that street.
“The sense of urgency was heightened by the accident, but the plans had been in the works for some time,” said Jim Hunt from Facilities and Campus Planning.