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October 2016

Bicycling Advocates Warn of Rise in Bike and Pedestrian Accidents

By | Coalition News

This article originally appeared on MainePublic.org
BANGOR, Maine – A Maine group that promotes bicycling says it’s noticed an uptick in the number of fatal crashes between automobiles and bicyclists and pedestrians in recent weeks. Three people have been killed in separate incidents since Oct. 10, bringing the total of fatalities so far this year to 11 – on pace with last year. The Maine Bicycle Coalition’s James Tasse says dangerous road design, distracted driving, and bikers and walkers not paying attention all play a role. “There are a lot of factors at play,” he says. “Just goes to show that our roads are dangerous places where people really need to be doing the best they can to look out for others in all situations.” Last year, a record 19 people were killed on Maine roadways while walking. Tasse says the coming months of fading daylight historically show the biggest upswing bike and pedestrian fatalities.

Safety gets spruced up for a day in streets of Waterville

By | Coalition News

This article originally appeared on PressHerald.com
BY MADELINE ST. AMOUR
WATERVILLE — What looked like colorful fall decor popped up Wednesday morning near busy intersections on Main and Front streets here.
The hay bales, pumpkins and flowers weren’t just to celebrate fall, though. They were actually curb extensions, also known as “bump-outs,” used to increase pedestrian safety at crosswalks.
At the intersection of Front and Temple streets, the hay bales and pumpkins were set out just outside the curb. The extension served a few purposes, said Jim Tasse, assistant director of the Bicycle Coalition of Maine.
While the curb extension did not change the width of the driving lanes, it did change the perception of width, slowing traffic. It also forced cars to make better turns and provided space for pedestrians to step out farther and look for oncoming traffic, Tasse said. “With just a few hay bales, you can see that instead of coming through here at 40 (mph), people are coming through at 25,” he said.
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The future is in good hands

By | BikeMaine, Coalition News

This article originally appeared in the Ellsworth American
Dear Editor:
People like to complain about young folks. But during and after BikeMaine’s visit to Lubec I received a lovely surprise. We had youngsters from the Lubec Consolidated School, the Campobello Island Consolidated School and the Cobscook Community High School Program helping throughout the BikeMaine Village — some with luggage and setting up and taking down tents, others with serving meals, and, of course, some as greeters and cheerleaders as the riders arrived.
Adults riding with BikeMaine as well as locals working with the students took the time to tell me how wonderful the youngsters were — polite, respectful and always helpful. Watching their joy while setting up or taking down the tents, carrying luggage, serving dinner and breakfast and interacting with the riders showed what an asset they are to our communities. I send all the students who helped us a heartfelt thumbs-up for their wonderful contribution to BikeMaine’s visit to Lubec!
Ruta Jordans
Lubec

Waterville to Install Temporary Curb Extensions to Increase Pedestrian Safety (Video)

By | Coalition News

Downtown Waterville will soon feature temporary curb extensions to shorten pedestrian crossings.
It’s part of a two-part safety demonstration project organized by the city and the Bicycle Coalition of Maine.
The first curb ‘bump out’ is expected to take place October 19th.
Travel lanes of Main and Front streets will be narrowed to shorten the distance between sidewalks for pedestrians.
Curb extensions will be temporarily added to the intersections of Temple and Front streets as well as Main and Appleton streets.
“It allows pedestrians to come out a little bit further. They come out no further than a parking bay. So it’s not as if they’re standing in the street or anything. They’re completely within a safe zone and it just facilitates the visibility of that safe zone more and allows pedestrians to feel safer coming out,” said Sam Herr, Community Advocacy Coordinator for the Bicycle Coalition of Maine.
The second demonstration project will take place on November 2nd.
Both studies hope to show how inexpensive and simple it is to improve pedestrian safety as well as slow down traffic.