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Letter: Bike Way To The Danger Zone

I’ve recently raised a concern on the Plainview Moms Facebook page about a dangerous pedestrian/bicycle crossing on Old Bethpage Road in Plainview. It tends to be one of the busier crossings for those using the newly redone Greenbelt Trail.

The crossing seems to have gotten worse once a “traffic control” was added. It was actually a safer crossing prior, because it was very clear that the onus was on pedestrians and cyclists to wait for an opening in the traffic.

Enter the vague crosswalk! A crosswalk was painted on the road several months back. There are even flashing light on either side of the road that can be tripped when a button is pressed. However, the yellow sign merely states “Trail Crossing.” The word “yield” or “stop” is not used. Pedestrians press the button for the lights and then proceed, assuming traffic will stop for them. However, it seems there is only a 50 percent chance this will happen.

Now the whole situation is vague at best — for both motorists and pedestrians. Many drivers seem confused as to how to treat these blinking lights. Slow down? Proceed with caution? I have also seen other motorists grow impatient with considerate drivers who do stop for cyclists.

I have seen so many near misses at the crossing, including my own son who was nearly hit right in front of me. I have seen school buses blow through this crossing, Town of Oyster Bay Garbage Trucks ... motorists are just not completely sure what they are supposed to do there. All the crossing does is give the formerly wary pedestrians a completely false sense of security. It is an accident waiting to happen. Those crossing signs really need to be bolder and should say “State Law Requires you to Stop when Pedestrians are on Crosswalk,” or even a regular “Stop” sign.

I recently woke up to news of a bicyclist killed in Melville and decided that I did not want to wait for that to happen here. We need to take action.

Laura Miller

News

For as long as she could remember, Christina Amato-Smith has always wanted to open her own hair salon. The Floral Park native worked at a salon down the road from her home, but it wasn’t until 1994 when Amato-Smith made good on her promise to herself.

“I came to Bethpage to open my business because my clients were here,” said Amato-Smith, who now lives in Lindenhurst and has owned Top Cuts for 20 years.

Thanks in large part to a substantial increase in sponsor support – and Mother Nature’s cooperation – the 2014 Plainview-Old Bethpage Craft and Gift Fair was a rousing success.

A caravan of vendors filled the parking lot of the Plainview-Old Bethpage Library starting at 7 a.m. By the time fairgoers crossed the blue and green balloon arch at 10 a.m. to receive their free T-shirt and bags stuffed with sponsor goodies, there were 108 booths ready to welcome them on the sunny day.


Calendar

4th Annual Harvest Festival

Saturday, Oct. 25

Health and Wellness Senior Fair

Tuesday, Oct. 28

Haunted Halloween

Wednesday, Oct. 29



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
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Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
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