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Together, Towns Work to Avoid Another Tragedy

This map of the Town Line Road and Wainscott Main Street intersection shows the areas of two newly proposed stop signs; others are also within the works.

The double-yellow stripes running up and down Town Line Road make up the official dividing line between the hamlet of Wainscott and the Village of Sagaponack, in East Hampton and Southampton Towns respectively.

But the place it divides, it will additionally now unite — albeit within the wake of a tragedy. On June 30, an 11-year-old boy riding his bicycle on Town Line Road was struck and killed by a pickup truck backing out of a job web site south of Montauk Highway.

Sagaponack Mayor Bill Tillotson and East Hampton Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc agree that it is time something is completed about dangerous traffic situations in the area — not simply on Town Line, but on connecting roads, too, earlier than another disaster happens. Local lanes were simply not meant to handle the large quantity of automobiles using them right now, the two officials mentioned this week in separate interviews.

During Tuesday’s East Hampton Town Board work session, Mr. Van Scoyoc advised adding extra stop signs where Town Line Road meets such facet streets as Wainscott Main, Daniel’s Lane, Hedges Lane, and Parsonage Lane. Town code requires a public listening to each time a cease signal is taken into account, although the board stopped simply in need of scheduling such hearings. Councilwoman Kathee Burke-Gonzalez mentioned she wished to pay attention to first from the Wainscott Citizens Advisory Committee, which is to meet on Saturday.

In Sagaponack, “our ordinances are written in such a trend that cease indicators could be put up immediately,” Mr. Tillotson stated, however he mentioned the village will anticipate East Hampton to carry its public hearings first.

Sagaponack is taking security improvements a quantity of steps further. A sidewalk is being proposed for the village’s facet of Town Line Road, as is a turnaround at the seaside highway end, so that emergency automobiles can navigate more easily. Sagaponack may even direct property house owners to eliminate anti-parking units such as sticks and stones that reach into the basic public proper of way, and landscaping that infringes on village-owned strips as nicely.

“In the following week or so, letters will go out to homeowners requesting that they remove obstructions, which, typically, folks is not going to do,” Mr. Tillotson said. “At some level, we have to have a bid doc drawn up by an engineering firm and at that time we will exit to bid on a venture the place the construction company would take away the obstructions and install the sidewalk.”

Sagaponack can be instituting a new coverage for construction sites: Commercial automobiles cannot be backed out from driveways. If it cannot be prevented, then a spotter must be stationed within the highway to help the motive force back out safely.

“I’m very aware of the danger that mirrors don’t always provide a clear view,” mentioned Mr. Tillotson, who has a business driver’s license himself. “If you’ve a automobile or baby on a bicycle, it’s fairly potential for them to get behind you with out you noticing them. It’s an actual worry. Anyone driving a truck knows the perils of backing up.”

Sagaponack has additionally asked East Hampton to assume about restricting parallel parking alongside its side of Town Line Road. Currently, holders of city seashore passes can park there virtually all the way to Wainscott Main Street.

In the June 30 accident — which was one of two fatal bicycle accidents on the South Fork inside the span of per week — no legal costs had been filed. Neither drugs nor alcohol was involved, detectives concluded after subjecting the truck driver to a quantity of hours of questioning and testing at Southampton Town police headquarters in Hampton Bays. It was deemed an accident — a horrible one.

“With our major roadways becoming clogged with traffic, partially because of Waze and Google Maps and different such providers, individuals are being routed on to what had been relatively quiet residential streets, to work around visitors,” Mr. Van Scoyoc observed. “You have elevated volumes of site visitors, and you also have people who find themselves driving in extra of the posted speed limits, and that is altering the character of neighborhoods and causing security considerations.”

Just final week, Mr. Tillotson mentioned, Southampton Town police “caught two completely different individuals on Hedges Lane going 80 miles per hour. People use it as a bypass and do not cease for cease signs. They are generally disrespectful of people trying to cross the street on the submit office. They don’t stop for the crosswalk. It’s a real downside.”

A July 29 memo to the East Hampton Town Board from Jeremy Samuelson, the Planning Department director, reveals that there’s help inside the city for the new stop signs and turnaround proposal. They are part of Mr. Samuelson’s formal recommendations to the board.

“Considering latest consciousness surrounding the potential for hazardous conditions for each drivers and pedestrians in the area, the Planning Department concurs with extra stop signs for uniformity in these intersections,” Mr. Samuelson wrote. “Additionally, the division feels that it’s merely in the interest of security and good visitors situations for every entrance into that intersection to have its personal cease sign. The division believes that this will have a basic calming effect on native site visitors.”

With Reporting by Christopher Walsh

 

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