Accidents decrease at Lucinda, Annie Glidden

By Kelly Bauer

There have been fewer vehicle-related accidents at the intersection of Lucinda Avenue and Annie Glidden Road since last year, said NIU Police Sgt. Alan Smith.

In a 2010 article, the Northern Star reported on various intersections around DeKalb County where accidents were common. The cost of disobeying road signals, which increases the chance of being in an accident, has risen. Even if the lawbreaker or another are not injured as a result, they can be issued a $120 ticket for disobeying a traffic control device. In the past, tickets were about $65, and the price varies at the discretion of the officers issuing them, Smith said.

“Our goal is safety,” Smith said. “We don’t want to ticket, but we will. Typically, we don’t ticket [jaywalkers] – we give warnings. Every now and then, we will give a ticket. It’s a case-by-case basis.”

Smith said those crossing the street should pay attention to the road and drivers, rather than talking or texting on cellphones. Smith attributed a decline in the number of accidents at intersections to police action and walkers being more aware of their actions.

“Besides us staying out there and educating them, more students are being responsible,” Smith said. “We still have some [who don’t], but the majority of them stop at the red and wait for the green.”

Senior history major Ashley Parra said she doesn’t jaywalk because of the risk to her safety. Parra said she thinks most students follow the traffic and pedestrian signals.

“People seem like they’ll run you over even when you’re going with the light,” Parra said.

In the past, the city of DeKalb has introduced more lights and signs to help promote pedestrian and driver safety. The intersection at Annie Glidden Road and Dresser Road saw the installation of more lights in May because the city thought there would be an increase in traffic once DeKalb High School, 501 Dresser Rd., opened.

Joel Maurer, DeKalb’s assistant director of public works, said the city also recently repainted the striping at Lucinda Avenue to emphasize where to walk when crossing the street, though that was a “minor” project.

“The hope would be that improved safety could be had by adding more lights,” Maurer said.

However, being safe is ultimately up to drivers and pedestrians. Smith said that people will still walk against the arrow or won’t look both ways when crossing the street, which increases the potential for accidents.

“Safety is not just the police officer’s responsibility,” Smith said. “Be courteous. Drivers mind pedestrians, and pedestrians mind drivers.”