Bicycle Coalition News about Circuit Trails, pedestrian safety, sustainability, and environmental issues in Philadelphia and the surrounding region in NJ, Delaware County, Bucs County, and more.

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Josh Goldinger was struck and killed at around 2:45 PM on Tuesday August 8th while trying to cross Makefield Rd at N. Old Homestead Rd. in Lower Makefield Township, Pennsylvania, according to news reports.

Josh is believed to be the fourth person on a bicycle killed by a motor vehicle drivers in 2017 in the Greater Philadelphia Region. He is the second victim in Bucks County.

There is no doubt that this young man was loved by many.

A Change.org petition to Lower Makefield Township has been created, asking to add sidewalks to Makefield Road.

As of Thursday afternoon, nearly than 8,000 people have signed it. People are not just writing this tragedy off as an unfortunate “accident” — they want to make the road safer for everyone.

It is unclear as to whether the addition of sidewalks, alone, would have prevented this crash. But a look at Google Street View shows the Makefield Rd road is not designed for bicycle or pedestrian travel.

 

The area is residential. If people live there, then non-motorized travel should be expected. A school zone is located a couple of hundred feet north of the intersection, that alone should justify a sidewalk or better yet a shared use sidepath. A zebra-style crosswalk (think Abby Road) would be a visible indicator for motorists to expect pedestrians.

Makefield Road is a township road that looks more like a semi-rural highway than a neighborhood street with a speed limit is posted at 35 mph. A person struck by a vehicle at that speed has a 70 percent chance of dying, with the impact equivalent to falling out of a 4th-floor window. This crash was in broad daylight with excellent sight lines.

On behalf of the Bicycle Coalition and Bike Bucks County, we offer our deepest condolences to Josh’s family and friends. And if you haven’t yet, please sign the petition.

John Boyle

Author

John has been a commuting cyclist for more than 20 years. In 1994 he began working as a volunteer for the Bicycle Coalition of the Delaware Valley after attending a volunteer night, and later served as a board member in 1997-98. In 1999 John left Philadelphia for Charlottesville, VA, where he helped establish the Alliance for Community Choice in Transportation (ACCT), a bicycle and walking advocacy group.