A Tri-State Transportation Campaign (TSTC) report of the most deadly roads in Nassau County cited seven pedestrian fatalities that occurred on Sunrise Highway between 2008-2010 including one in Wantagh a year and a half ago that has sparked calls for safety improvements along the busy South Shore roadway.
Ever since that fateful day on Sept. 22, 2010 when her 14-year old daughter Brittany was by a Toyota Camry on Sunrise Highway in Wantagh, has lobbied for safer pedestrian conditions and helped advocate for . The TSTC has joined Vega’s campaign and the Wantagh mother is now trying to get a similar "complete streets" policy approved by the Town of Hempstead.
Vega said she is hoping the new TSTC report will help accelerate the need for increased safety improvements along Sunrise Highway and other heavily traveled roadways like Hempstead Turnpike. She is happy with new “no turn on red” signs that have been installed along with countdown clocks for pedestrians at certain stretches on Sunrise Highway, including the intersection of Wantagh Avenue where her daughter was tragically killed. However, Vega said other improvements are greatly needed on Sunrise Highway including more pedestrian islands and lowering the speed limit.
“There is so much more that needs to be addressed,” Vega said. “They need to do something about the speed before more people get hurt.”
The TSTC report was an analysis of National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Fatality Analysis Reporting System.
William Reynolds, Director of Communications with the New York State Department of Transportation, said, "we will be taking a close look at conditions on Sunrise Highway, as we do with all major roadways, and determine what actions need to be taken. We will continue to focus on improving safety for all roadway users."