A Concerned Mother

Last month, on May 5th, 2011, Sandra Barlett attended a Roselle Park Mayor & Council meeting. Mrs. Barlett was, and is still, concerned about the safety of the children playing in front of their houses and the speeding cars on East Colfax Avenue – especially between Sherman Avenue and Hemlock Avenue.

Mrs. Barlett has been residing in Roselle Park for ten years and she noticed that speeding had started to become an issue about three (3) years ago. According to Mrs. Barlett, approximately 40 children live in the area and many of them play in the street, ride their bicycles & skateboards, and play basketball due to the renovations in Acker Park which removed the basketball courts.

She had contacted the Roselle Park Police Department (RPPD) on many occasions and,  out of frustration, she came to the Mayor & Council meeting to state her concerns along with a petition which had approximately 50 signatures from residents in her neighborhood. Mrs. Barlett has personal experience with the dangers of vehicles and children on the roadway; her own daughter was injured on Chestnut Street by a hit-and-run driver and had to be home-schooled for three (3) months due to the severity of her injuries.

After speaking with councilman Marc Caswell and Police Chief Paul Morrison, it was decided to put a portable speed counter on her street to see how many cars traveled on the road as well as the speed they were going.

At the conclusion of the study, the RPPD collected all data and published its results which were as follows:

During the time period of the study 1,058 vehicles traveled in a easterly direction on East Colfax Avenue and 795 vehicles traveled in a westerly direction for a total vehicle volume of 1,853 vehicles. The study indicated that 85% of the vehicles that traveled eastbound traveled at a speed of under 27 MPH with an average speed of 15 MPH – the highest percentile of vehicles traveled at a recorded speed of 18-27 MPH.Comparatively, 85% of the vehicles that traveled westbound traveled at a speed of under 28 MPH with an average speed of 20 MPH – the highest percentile of vehicles traveled at a recorded speed of 18-27 MPH. As a result of the study, the RPPD  determined that there were a small number of vehicles that might have exceeded the 25 MPH speed limit but the traffic issue was not as serious as first indicated to the Police Department.

To help with the situation, the RPPD stated it would be putting “Drive 25 Keep Kids Alive” signs on East Colfax Avenue as well as 25 MPH speed limit signs.