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Mother and Daughter Struck in Crosswalk

by Bobby Blair
June 16, 2012

Two people were struck by a vehicle in the crosswalk downtown Saturday afternoon

A mother and daughter were struck by a vehicle as they crossed Washington Street Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m.

According to one eye witness to the accident, the vehicle driver "just hit them".

The extent of injuries to mother and daughter are unknown and both were taken by Holliston Ambulance to the hospital


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Comments (39)

The downtown area of Holliston is very dangerous. The area badly needs some traffic lights and enforcement of the traffic rules. Vehicles frequently cut into the line of traffic without any consideration of the safety of other cars and people who merely want to cross the street. Why wait to act on this matter when people are being injured?

- Mary Kinsella | 12/1/15 5:28 PM

We can all agree that the pedestrian signal lights are poorly designed and insufficient for the intended purpose. And while the calls for traffic lights might appear obvious, it does not directly confront the underlying issue of excess traffic speed that is closer to the root cause of so many downtown traffic woes. Getting this under control should not be a difficult thing to accomplish with existing resources, and the effort can begin immediately without the need for engineering studies or any other delays. Time is of the essence.

- Mac | 6/22/12 12:00 PM

I second this emotion. I have been thinking about this for a long time and have developed some ideas.

Warren Chamberlain Planning Board

" Stop lights are needed at both Central Street and Hollis Street to slow down traffic. People drive too fast through these 2 intersections at rush hour and do not allow themselves enough time to stop. This is a Planning Board priority. Jack Donovan Planning Board

- Jack Donovan | 6/18/12 7:07 PM

- Warren Chamberlain | 6/21/12 7:14 PM

Ithink a major help would be for Right turn only from any of the parking lots and from Green St and Exchange St.

Also a set of lights at Central and Hollis set up similar pattern as the one at the top of Main street hill in Ashland. Stop Washington street traffic at Hollis and Central, clear the middle between Hollis and Central. Release Hollis and Central into the middle section, then start traffic flow on Washington street again.

- David | 6/21/12 7:07 PM

FYI, the Ambulance is staffed by 3 on call personell and if you notice they do have on Fire Dept shirts. As a former EMT for Holliston I know first hand that you are often coming from work or family/household activities. It would take way too much time and effort to go somewhere to change before resonding to the scene, the on duty crew almost always wears something that identifies themselves but since it is not a full time department it is crazy to expect them to wear a standardized uniform all day in the off chance they get a call that day (12 hours on call per shift).

- David | 6/21/12 7:03 PM

REALLY....If you were lying on the street injured my guess is that you would be happy to have the assistance of Holliston's well trained, highly competent, ON CALL responders regardless of their attire. They drop whatever they are doing and rush to the scene to provide service. Would you prefer that they take the time to change into a UNIFORM?????? REALLY

- Pat Duffey | 6/20/12 11:58 AM

I REALLY don't care if EMS personnel are wearing jeans and t-shirts. I care that they arrive quickly and know what they are doing.

Also, we have a "call" fire department , not a "volunteer" one.

- Michelle Zeamer | 6/20/12 10:49 AM

Is EMS on scene there? Jeans and T-shirts? I've heard that we have a volunteer ambulance company, but does the town not provide uniforms to the volunteers so we the public know who they are!?

- Really? | 6/20/12 2:17 AM

Update: I spoke with Paul LeBeau, who said that the selectmen had just agreed to start an engineering analysis of the traffic problems downtown. I appreciate his response!

- Dianna Vosburg | 6/20/12 12:23 AM

Speed control...speed control...speed control. Vehicles move through the blocks from the Mobil station to Town hall much too fast, with all the consequences noted here. Lights and signs may have some mitigating impact, but police presence and tickets - big tickets - might begin to get the word out that Holliston is serious about pedestrian safety in the downtown area.

- Kevin Robert Malone | 6/19/12 8:16 PM

I called the town hall yesterday about this issue. Perhaps if everyone commenting here could also call, or send in a letter, we would have a better chance of being heard.

- Dianna Vosburg | 6/19/12 10:33 AM

Stop lights are needed at both Central Street and Hollis Street to slow down traffic. People drive too fast through these 2 intersections at rush hour and do not allow themselves enough time to stop.

This is a Planning Board priority.

Jack Donovan

Planning Board

- Jack Donovan | 6/18/12 10:07 PM

This is the worst intersection ever. I stopped short to allow kids in the cross walk and was hit from behind. Just awful.

- JSR | 6/18/12 6:34 PM

I've written comments about this issue several times before but apparently to blind eyes. Crossing is dangerous and the lights provide a false sense of security. Many times I've wondered whether the lights even meet the standard requirements for traffic control devices. Selectmen, be forewarned. If it is foreseeable and preventable it is negligence.

- RPW | 6/18/12 3:28 PM

This is ridiculous. Even worse, I wonder if alcohol was involved? I live a half mile down Central and every week I find discarded beer and wine bottles on the side of the road as I mow my lawn :(

- Concerned on Central St. | 6/18/12 2:41 PM

To our Holliston Selectmen: Please do something soon about the crosswalk issues in downtown Holliston. We cannot afford to risk the cost of lives of our residents and children to be affected as they were Saturday afternoon when a vehicle sped through our town hitting a mother and child. This is an outrage ! Last week at school release time, children were literally dodging cars/trucks trying to cross between the Pejamajo Café and the Superette, as well as at the Holliston Library crosswalk. Will it take a death at one of these intersections for Holliston to wake up and realize we desperately need traffic lights at both of our downtown intersections ? Please consider this your top priority before another such tragedy occurs.

Ken and Carolynn Henderson

- Ken and Carolynn Henderson | 6/18/12 12:40 PM

I gasped when I saw this headline! First and foremost, we should all pray for the mother and daughter injured. Secondly, I know it is easy to blame the lack of a traffic lights on this, but what was the driver of the car thinking? I was downtown Saturday and there were lots and lots of people, cars and activities going on. What part of that says - don't slow down and be aware of what is going on around you? I drive through Holliston sometimes after midnight and still slow down through the downtown area. It's a respect thing! I agree with Mary Greendale about the penisula idea if we can't get lights right away.

- Linda Ahronian | 6/17/12 11:23 PM

The light set up at Cole Court seems to work. I don't know about anyone else, but if I look up to the yellow flashing lights may eyes are not on the crosswalk. Not a very smart set up!!!!!! I too hope they are ok.

- Mike Rossini | 6/17/12 9:14 PM

This is not the first time a pedestrian has been struck in this intersection, and there has been talk of a traffic light since the mid-1970's. One problem has been that the state would not consider installing a light there without installing a light at Hollis and Washington Streets as well. But there are short term solutions. I agree with the comment that the parking spot that blocks the view needs to be removed immediately. And since we know that the state takes a very long time to approve a new light, I suggest that the highway department build a "bump-out" like they have in Newton and Brookline. This is a peninsula of sidewalk that stretches into the roadway making visibility better and the distance across shorter. These are steps the Selectmen could implement quickly.

- Mary Greendale | 6/17/12 7:44 PM

What if Holliston Antiques put an old police uniform on the manikin they put out at the corner of Central and Washington?

- Just-a-Thought | 6/17/12 6:36 PM

The worst intersection in the state! The light and speed bumps were put in for one reason, they look nice and go nice with the flowers. They are useless. There is a parking spot in front of the deli that blocks the entire view of the pedestrian until it is too late. They refuse to take this spot away! Imagine what happens when one of these cars goes into the idiots sitting in the proposed outdoor seating! You need new lights, stop and go, period! They might not be quite as nice looking but they will save a life!! This was just done a few years ago (like the town hall paint job) my guess is there will be a selectmens's meeting, the will be an increased police presence for about a week and at some point, a person will be seriously hurt (again) and we will pay to have the new lights put in. How's that nightmare at Woodland and High working out, pretty nice insn't it, no more accidents!! Who would have thought, in this day in age stop and go does work! One Holliston Officer told me the lghts are almost unenforceable because of they way they work and the confusing height.Does anyone know who designed these and aproved them?

- fmrresident | 6/17/12 4:13 PM

I have suggested to the Town Hall they need to take off the sensors that are on the poles. Since the poles now have buttons to push- take off the sensors. I have tried all the crosswalks and unless you are in a specific spot they do not activate , but the people crossing the street don't know that. Let's try that then the buttons have to be pushed . Also as a downtown resident I have seen the Police Dept. sitting in different spots monitoring motorists and pulling cars over alot. Just because you don't see a marked cruiser doesn't mean they aren't watching !!!!!

- Brett Morrison | 6/17/12 4:06 PM

I've almost been hit several times, there and the crossing in front of the Mobil - you really need to pay attention and make eye contact with the cars, or get their attention, as many drivers just don't see you trying to cross - I recently spent several days on the coast of RI and one town had a basket with orange flags on both sides of the cross walk, which I thought was great and the drivers saw you - I was laughing and clowning a little as I crossed the street, but it was effective and I felt safe.

- Lee DeSorgher | 6/17/12 3:13 PM

Having proper traffic lights at the Washington/Hollis St and Washington/Central St intersections is something that is long overdue. So what if it takes a little longer to get through this area. I hope the mother and daughter who were hit are doing ok, and please, once and for all, Holliston Selectmen...DO THE RIGHT THING!

- safety is most important | 6/17/12 1:57 PM

I suggest that the police spend time every Saturday and ticket every car that does not stop for people in the crosswalk. Perhaps that would make more people aware. How about a sound when the yellow lights are engaged to help make folks aware? Can the blinking lights be flashing red, that might be more visible.

If I remember correctly it is the state thas has to approve the lights, but we could start a petition?

How about an investigative article in HR?


- Jenny McGee | 6/17/12 1:20 PM

As a driver approaching the crosswalks downtown, you are watching the traffic ahead of you, you are watching the side of the road because often people press the button and then immediately walk into the road, and you are watching for the light to turn yellow. It's quite feat. Also, people drive much too fast in downtown. The speed limit should be much lower and posted! Time to admit we made a mistake and take these lights out and install proper and safe signals protecting both pedestrians and vehicles. We pray for those hit yesterday.

- Brenda Chamberlain | 6/17/12 1:02 PM

I don't recall ever seeing a police officer downtown doing traffic enforcement! Until such time as we get a traffic light down there, would it be unreasonable to have (1) more prominently posted 25 MPH signs and (2) officers standing with a radar gun and actually enforcing the laws?

- Sasha Golden | 6/17/12 12:37 PM

It's time for conventional traffic lights here. I have always felt they were too high for the average motorist to be looking out for them. I hope the mother and child are doing alright.

- Butch | 6/17/12 11:09 AM

We Need a Traffic Light! Simple as that. A REAL traffic light with (gasp!) RED lights.

I remember as a kid playing a game called "Red Light, Green Light 1-2-3". It was obvious to a 6 year old that RED light meant stop, and GREEN light meant go. And the game had no yellow light.

- Wouldn't Mind Waiting | 6/17/12 10:30 AM

I agree with everyone,we need real lights! I'm always nervous about crossing with my Grandson. Hope the Mom and child are okay!

- Jill Margand | 6/17/12 10:23 AM

Apparently the accident had occurred just moments before the line of traffic I was in had come to a virtual standstill because of this. I was absolutely horrified when I saw the child lying in the street (there were several people kneeling on the ground to offer help while waiting for the ambulance, so I wasn't aware that a woman had been hit as well). I went home fighting tears - and this was the SECOND time I had come across an accident in that crosswalk, the other time being in the late '90s. In addition, I personally was nearly hit one day while crossing Hollis St., in the crosswalk, when a large truck came barreling off Washington St. onto Hollis. Whenever I am in my car on Central St., attempting to turn left onto Washington St., I literally feel as though I am taking my life in my hands, especially since the vehicles parked in the spaces in front of the antique store block the view until I can inch out to watch for traffic. We are in absolutely desperate need of full traffic lights at both of these intersections, Central and Washington, and Hollis and Washington! Must someone die before proper traffic lights are installed?!

- Verna Hobson | 6/17/12 4:56 AM

I have written to the town selectmen (several YEARS ago) and left messages for them about the absolute necessity of putting in PROPER traffic lights (including left-turn arrow lights). I never heard a word back from them. We need lights at both major intersections: Washington and Central, and at Washington and Hollis. Will someone have to die before make this town safe for pedestrians and drivers? It's absurd.

- Dianna Vosburg | 6/16/12 9:35 PM

We don't even need a full traffic light, we could have a light that blinks green most of the time, then turns yellow then red when someone is crossing. And I agree, the pedestrian needs the feedback of the white walker to know when it's (mostly) safe to cross.

- Mark | 6/16/12 9:11 PM

The Mother and daughter are in our prayers tonight. Those erratic yellow lights are great for low flying aircraft but do nothing for the pedestrian or driver. The logical crosswalk at Central St. would be at the antique store where drivers would be looking for oncoming traffic. Traffic lights have seemed to work in all other towns. Do we have to be different ??

- Snowy | 6/16/12 7:15 PM

Hope they are ok.. what is sorely needed there are REAL crossing lights like in most downtowns. You know, a RED light faces traffic, and a white hand and whistle face walkers. Walkers here have no idea when the yellow 'suggestion' light is flashing wayyy up high above motorists view ..... it's been silly since day one. Someone will force a change.

- mel | 6/16/12 6:44 PM

I just passed that before the ambulance got there. I knew it would happen sooner or later. People do not stop for the cross walk. Hope they both are ok.

- Lorraine Kruass | 6/16/12 6:36 PM

I live downtown and honestly feel like I am taking my life in my hands everytime I try to use the crosswalks. The yellow lights are too high up for cars to see and we need a real light that allows people to cross safely. What a horrible thing happened today and it makes it all the worse to know that it could have been prevented.

- Rev. Bonnie Steinroeder | 6/16/12 6:35 PM

I hope they are ok. People need to SLOW DOWN when going through this area and WATCH what they are doing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And yes, we *NEED* lights downtown. I stopped for a young kid earlier today (around 11am this morning) and about two cars went right through the crosswalk before someone stopped and let the kid cross.

- Alison | 6/16/12 6:25 PM

I hope they are both ok. WE NEED A STOPLIGHT at that intersection!!!

- Michelle Zeamer | 6/16/12 6:02 PM



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