Crosswalks to receive safety improvements in Carolina Beach

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Carolina Beach Crosswalk Improvements (Photo: WWAY/ Lakeeda Johnson.)

CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY)– A toddler’s death is bringing change to Carolina Beach.
In March a driver hit two pedestrians killing the child and injuring her grandmother. Now the town is working to make walking around a bit safer.

An accident that happened nearly 7 months ago now raises awareness, the DOT has approved of a list of crosswalks. They’re now getting people to slow down.

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This push to improve safety in Carolina Beach began almost immediately after one -year-old Cora Kruger was hit and killed while in a crosswalk with her grandmother in March.

“Improved crosswalks, I think show a little more thought from our leadership to be able to put importance on slowing down, because again there can be quite a few accidents on Carolina Beach and Kure Beach,” said Carolina Beach resident Ben Page.

But others on the island believe it may not be the entire solution to the problem,
Kenneth Mcentire says red lights could be more effective.

“People stop for red lights. People fail to notice those little flashing lights on the side of the road. They’re not used to looking for those signs,” Mcentire said.

Town of Carolina Beach Public Works Director, Brian Stanberry says the NCDOT has given the okay for improvements at eight crosswalk locations.

There will now be crosswalk signs with LED lighting built around the perimeter of pedestrian signs. There will also be rapid flashing beacons, which will flash lights, drawing attention to pedestrians and the sidewalks.

Carolina Beach Mayor Joe Benson says that these changes may take some time.

“The very day after we were briefed, so that was yesterday, some of the bigger signs,more of the flashing beacons, the led lights, that’s going to take a series of weeks, but it’ll quickly be in advance of next season. We’ll see those through the fall,” Benson said.

Benson also says there will be identical signs on the front and back of poles at intersections and roads, warning drivers to stop for pedestrians.

Other improvements are also in the works.

“Speed reductions will require a council resolution to be passed. That should go pretty quick, we might even look at that as a seasonal speed, 35 maybe off season, 25 for the summer. We’ll see how that plays out,” Benson said.

The improvements should be completed within the next two weeks.

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