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Community leaders work to stop deadly crashes on 56th Street in Tampa

Vision Zero volunteers to hold signs urging safety
Posted at 5:42 AM, Apr 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-23 18:21:31-04

TAMPA, Fla. -- Community leaders are working together to make a dangerous stretch of road in Hillsborough County safer for pedestrians, including hundreds of students.

Vision Zero, an organization that advocates for safer streets, is "adopting" a high crash corridor on 56th Street between Sligh and Busch Boulevard in Hillsborough County. The corridor is only a mile and a half long.

"In the past 5 years, 4 people have been killed and 20 people have been severely injured and severely injured means it's a life altering injury,” said Alana Brasier, with Vision Zero. 

The things most likely to cause a crash out here - pedestrians trying to cross, people not yielding, risky turns and drunk drivers. It’s also on the top 20 list for severe crash corridors in Hillsborough county.

“Sometimes this left turn lane will get cluttered and after school we have a lot of kids crossing the street going to McDonalds, or walking home,” said Simon Carapella. It’s why he and his classmates joined dozens of volunteers from Vision Zero and the Hillsborough county metropolitan Planning organization in bright green shirts Monday. 

"Cross where there are safe crosswalks for you, slow down put your phones down,” said Brasier. said Alana Brasier, a volunteer with Vision Zero. "We want to remind you to drive safely and walk and bike safety along this stretch of street."

"My dad even preaches, any text or call I receive while I'm driving, wait till you hit a stopping point,” said Carapella.

Vision Zero is working with local law enforcement as well as King High School, which is located right at the intersection of the crash corridor at Sligh and 56th Street to further the initiative.

Crash data analysis and community input is also driving what needs to be done to make things less dangerous, according to Vision Zero.

Lessons learned while adopting these high-crash corridors will be applied to future high-crash corridors across the county, according to Vision Zero.

Vision Zero will also be adopting another high-crash corridor on 15th Street in Hillsborough County.