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Parents want changes to road outside Bothell school ‘for safety of our children’

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BOTHELL, Wash. — Heather Miller was attempting to walk her two little girls to Crystal Springs Elementary in Bothell.

“Before we stepped out on the sidewalk, I could hear something barreling down the road,” said Miller. “It turned out it was a tow truck and totally oblivious.”

Miller said she pulled her girls back as the driver slammed on his brakes, nearly hitting the crossing guard.

“People just don’t pay any attention. They drive way too fast.”

Parents who live across from the school on 9th Avenue are fed up with the drivers who speed along that stretch, calling it a tragedy waiting to happen.

“We’ve actually had two close calls where our kids were almost hit,” said Carol Hamlin. “It’s just not worth it for us to continue to do this.”

Neighbors believe drivers speed through 9th to avoid the congestion on the Bothell-Everett Highway.

“They don’t live here, and they’re just trying to get around that traffic bottleneck on Bothell-Everett Highway,” said Sean Hamlin.

The parents want changes, including speed bumps, flashing lights at the crosswalk, and a lower speed limit.

“The safety of our kids is very important,” said Jamal Mahmoud,  Bothell’s traffic engineer, who is making the changes on 9th a priority. But Mahmoud admits they come with a cost, and there’s no guarantee there will be money to pay for them.

“Flashers on the crosswalk would probably cost $100,000. It is not like a couple hundred dollars, so we have to have this money, and we have to budget for it.”

Parents are taking their own action. They’ve collected more than 100 signatures on a petition asking for the safety changes near Crystal Springs, and will soon present it to the city’s mayor and council.

“It’s not even really a request,” said Miller. “We really need this here for the safety of our children.”

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3 comments

  • BearTex3

    Every parent in the state of Washington wants this near all schools. And I can agree that the roads need to be safer around schools. It just ain’t gonna happen cause with the exception of those cities that eat paper and crap money, no city has the money for it. Think about Seattle alone and how many crosswalks there are going to the schools and at $100k a pop. Not happening. Now speed bumps are way cheaper and can be a start but even then it still isn’t in anyone’s “budget”. Now here is another idea. Before you cross in a crosswalk where yes you do have the right of way. Make sure traffic has yielded to you and you make eye contact with that driver. And teach your kids that. There are idiot drivers ranging in afar from 15-99 out there who are almost always distracted and in a hurry. So they don’t care. Remember this when you cross the road bring right does not fix dead so use common sense

    • Jason

      Great piece! Using common sense is a great idea and it can be supported by extra safety measures such as a crosswalk or speed bumps. Simply saying to use common sense doesn’t solve the problem.

      • BearTex3

        That’s because common sense is a luxury that most people don’t use. It’s the new “me” generation. In this instance pedestrians will walk up to a crosswalk and just step out and expect idiot drivers to stop because they are supposed to yield to them. Now while that is true most drivers don’t because they are either distracted or feel they don’t need to stop because it’s all about “me” and to hell with you.