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Traffic Signs–And Common Sense

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Walk-DontWalk-CollageThe picture to the left is the sign on the corner of Malvern and Bloomfield. The one in center is the traffic light on the south side of Bloomfield, opposite Malvern. The one of the right is the walk/don’t walk sign on the west-bound side of Bloomfield, which you would see if you were crossing Malvern at the crosswalk.

What does all this mean? It means that no matter what the time of day, be it 5 p.m. when there is traffic galore on Bloomfield, or 5 a.m. when the avenue is nearly deserted, ALL vehicles must STOP at the red traffic light and CANNOT make a right hand turn until the light is green. It means the pedestrians who are on Bloomfield Avenue and crossing Malvern have the right of way.

For most of us this is obvious. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the majority of people in the community do follow the traffic laws, even when it is inconvenient. (I’ll admit I’ve moaned and groaned when I want to make a right onto Grove from Linden, but I can’t because it’s during school hours and right-hand turns on red are prohibited then.) The signs are there for a reason. The laws are in place for a reason.

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Common sense, right?

MyVeronaNJPullQuote-WalkDontWalkLast week, a member of our community died while crossing Bloomfield. I don’t know all the details of this tragic hit-and-run, but I do know that we ALL need to take more caution when walking and driving through town. We ALL need to be alert and aware.

I took the above photos just this morning. I was out doing my morning walk. As you can see by the photos it was light out (although it was still dark when I started). I could hear a vehicle coming down Malvern as I headed west on Bloomfield. (I do have earbuds in when I walk, but traffic noise tends to drown out the music, which is a good thing as I need to be alert.) I had the right of way when crossing Malvern, but I used caution, which was a good thing. The white pick-up truck that came down the road not only turned on red, but didn’t even stop at the red light before proceeding.

The driver meant no malice. I’m sure he was in a hurry or distracted. It happens to all of us. But if I had not been alert, I could have been a statistic today.

I don’t mean to sound like a broken record. I know I’ve written about traffic issues before. But in light of recent events, I think it’s important to remind the entire community (pedestrians and drivers) to use caution. School is out and there are plenty of kids running around and not always paying attention to traffic. The weather is fine for early morning and late evening walkers. Be alert; take care. Hold back the impatience when at that traffic light or stop sign. I know we all have places to go and things to do. The world seems to be going faster and faster every day, but we need to slow down, for our own sake and for the sakes of those who are around us.

Beth Shorten is a life-long resident of Verona. For more than three years, she has been chronicling life here on her personal site, Bfth’s Boring Blog.

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Beth Shorten
Beth Shortenhttp://bfthsboringblog.blogspot.com
Beth Shorten is a life-long resident of Verona from a long line of life-long Verona residents. She chronicles life here on her personal site, Bfth’s Boring Blog. 

6 COMMENTS

  1. I grew up in Verona when the traffic was less dense than it is today. My mom still lives there, so I’m driving through there a few times a month. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen people going twice the speed limit or more, fail to stop at stop signs, running red lights and turn on red without even checking to see if there is traffic coming the other way. If anything the chance of accidents increase with more cars on the road and you have 50% of the people that are taking chances by ignoring the signs.

    Two years ago, I was hit broad side by a woman that was going twice the speed limit in a residential area and blew through the intersection – she didn’t even see the stop sign she ran through because she turned her head to talk to friends in the backseat of the car. It pushed my car out of the intersection and onto an empty corner lot on opposite the side of the intersection. The safety features of my car save me from any serious injury. Luckily there were no trees on that corner. Another 20 feet and the result would have been quite different. But it shook me up and I still have that feeling today.

    Some drivers don’t see the signs because they are too distracted and other think they are special and the signs don’t apply to them. Not that this is unique to Verona and I realize that there are a lot of cars that travel through Verona to get to other towns.

    However, I have seen a number of cars doing this with the magnetic ‘V’ on their cars. So the people in town are just as guilty as the people just passing through. A lot of these people have kids in the car.

    A relative of mine used an expression – rushing to an early grave. We only have the one life – the life you save maybe that of a family member or yourself. A lot people never seem to realize that until something happens to them that brings them to the brink of that.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone had that perspective without having to test their mortality. Please Slow Down.

  2. Well said! Park Place and Bloomfield is another intersection where cars routinely turn without yielding to pedestrians in the crosswalk. I cross over Bloomfield there every morning to catch the bus, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve almost been run over!

  3. At that intersection, I wish they would add a “No Turn On Red” sign on a post on the south side of Bloomfield, that faces the drivers on Malvern.

    Reason being, I have found myself pulling up to that stoplight, and questioning if I can turn right on red. When I am the first (or often only car) on Malvern stopped at the light, I can not see the “No Turn On Red” posted to the right of my vehicle as it is out my field of vision.

  4. As far as instances like the white pick-up truck… I have contacted Police Chief Mitchell Stern by email ([email protected]) on a few occasions reporting traffic violations and issues I have witnessed. He has been very responsive to my concerns. I’m sure if you contact him, as I have, he will do his best to have officers check those areas you feel need more attention.

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