WEST PALM BEACH -- Alarmed by an increase in bicycle and pedestrian fatalities on Palm Beach County roads, Vice Mayor Robert Weinroth is calling for stronger safety initiatives.
“There’s a lot that needs to be done to make our roads safer for our stakeholders. Our county has committed to ‘Vision Zero,’ which strives to reduce the carnage on our roadways,” he said.
“We have a lot of work to do to protect our residents who are trying to bicycle and walk alongside big vehicles that mow them down with increasing frequency,” he said.
Eleven bicyclists died in the county in 2020, more than double the number of bicycle fatalities recorded in 2019, according to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles [flhsmv.gov].
Pedestrian fatalities also rose last year, with 41 deaths compared to 40 in 2019.
“Palm Beach County isn’t going in the right direction,” Gerry O’Reilly, the Florida Department of Transportation’s District Four Secretary, said referring to the trend in pedestrian and bicycle deaths.
Weinroth is co-chair of the Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency Governing Board, which will discuss the issue on Feb.18. The board will also vote on a resolution recognizing March as Florida Bicycle Month.
“I’m troubled by the trajectory of these statistics,” said Weinroth. “Our residents should not be taking their lives in their hands when they venture out on foot or by bicycle.”