October 19, 2013

Your turn | Readers speak out on making Myrtle Beach roads safer for pedestrians and bicyclists

Earlier this week, we asked readers their views on the efforts of a new Myrtle Beach subcommittee that hopes to make city’s roads safer for pedestrians and bicyclists.

Earlier this week, we asked readers their views on the efforts of a new Myrtle Beach subcommittee that hopes to make city’s roads safer for pedestrians and bicyclists.

The effort comes in response to the deaths of four bicyclists in the area this summer, two of them within the Myrtle Beach city limits.

Excerpts of some of your responses -- gleaned from Facebook and MyrtleBeachOnline.com comments -- follow:

Nancy Webber | Mopeds should be taken into consideration as well.

Karen Klein Brunetti | When the roads were improved along 17 Bypass, 544 and 501, why weren't bike/walking paths added? Poor road planning and lack of good public transportation make it impossible for those who do not have a car. The problem is even worse when you add in the tourists who don't know the roads and lose their common sense and manners when they reach the Grand Strand. Don't blame the walkers, bicyclists and mopeds.

Drivers need to take responsibility when they put the key in their 2,000 pound car and act like it’s a NASCAR race. Don't drive with that attitude and for God’s sake don't drink.

We need to be more patient and courteous when we drive. How about some cheap signs that state “You Do Not Own The Road” might get people thinking.

David Woodard | I agree Karen, however I do not blame bicyclists and pedestrians alone. Everyone is at fault really. If people do not pay attention to their surroundings, what would having signs do?

Joel Sturm | We could spend millions on bike lanes that will infuriate motorists, or we could advise pedestrians and cyclists to remove their earphones when walking or riding. I notice that many people with earphones are unaware of their surroundings, even when crossing the street. Perhaps a few inexpensive but attractive signs advising to pause the music when crossing a street might help.

Also, advising cyclists that they must obey highway laws, and ticketing those who do not, might help, too. At rental agencies, perhaps pamphlets that remind cyclists of their responsibilities (could be) given with the receipts. We don't have to spend a lot of money to save some people some pain.

Cindy Brookman | Ban mopeds!

Karen Klein Brunetti | I read in Ann Landers once where she advised everyone to think of others on the road as if they were drunk. Good advice.

David Woodard | I think bicycles should use the sidewalk because it wouldn't be really an issue of people hitting them. I have seen some bicyclists that do not pay attention and if an accident happened, it would be deemed the driver’s fault.

People should wear reflective vests while riding at night to make them visible to drivers. No matter how much money the city spends on trying to make it safer, there will always be accidents because people don't always follow what is right. Same for pedestrians. Some do not wait for the light to change but they see a space they can run across.

These things cannot be accounted for and are not always able to be seen by police to enforce this. Honestly I think that it would be a waste of taxpayers dollars when they can use the sidewalk. Let's use that money somewhere else where it will make a bigger difference. I am all about the safety of people but I don't see this being a productive idea.

Bettie Bobo Olivieri | I know that the law doesn't agree with me, but I have always thought that riding a bicycle “with” the traffic was unsafe. I believe that riding a bike “facing” the traffic is a much better idea. I believe I would have a better chance of survival if I could see a car coming towards me before impact.

Joee Estock | (S.C. Rep. Alan) Clemmons has an idea to make it safer to ride a bicycle or walk in the city -- let golf carts use the bicycle paths.

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