Archive 2008 - 2019

Be Safe and Be Seen Crossing Washington Street

by Nancy Farrell

The flags appeared this morning on both sides of the downtown intersection with the message to push the button and use a fluorescent flag to be seen while crossing the busy street. Then put the flag in the bucket on the other side.

Having just voted down a million dollar plan to make the intersection safe at Town Meeting, we might file this under "simple solutions to complex problems."

Matt Cooper heads back to work using a flag to cross. Works better if you hold it up, Matt!

John Paltrineri from his window at Fiske's noted that people had been using the flags throughout the day. "It's working," he said. Though he had no idea about how they got there, he thought they were a good temporary solution. 

But don't forget to look for cars approaching the crosswalk from four places. And jaywalking in this intersection is a terrible idea, even when Bobby Blair is not watching -- drivers have enough to keep track of passing through here.

Comments (15)

Search "pedestrian sued town". You will get pages and pages of news articles about pedestrians and/or family members suing over the perceived liability of a city/town. The fact that residents voted down an expert's plan (when there is a known problem) to form a "committee" is just setting ourselves up! As for the flags, if they were to remain, who takes on that liability? If they were all on one side of the street or stolen and not available for use when someone tried to cross and they got hit, who's fault is that? The person that mysteriously placed them there or the town? I believe in personal responsibility and make sure cars from all sides see me before attempting to cross, but unfortunately, we live in a country that has far too many looking for any and everybody else for fault. It's only a matter of time Holliston. Patiently waiting for the committee's better solution!!!!

Lights please | 2015-05-20 08:12:58

I'm glad they were removed. Since when can an individual decide what they think is best for an entire town and act on it? A person can bring their own flag, safety vest, crash helmet, whatever to deal with down town, but don't dump a bucket full of flags without permission and subject all of Holliston to the ridicule.

M.A. | 2015-05-20 05:30:49

No one has died, but a number have been seriously injured. The flags are a great (and creative) idea. If they were taken away, it would be nice to know the reason.

Mark | 2015-05-19 18:29:00

Bad roads & bad drivers: (8/14 report) "Allstate Insurance's annual Best Driver's Report is out, and what many of us have known firsthand for decades is now official: the worst drivers in America are from Massachusetts. The Bay State accounts for three of the bottom four cities in the rankings." America's worst drivers need all the help they can get!!! Why did it take so long to stop parking in front of the crosswalk? How about no parking in front of the apron coming out of the parking lot behind the shopping center? Let some common sense prevail ( for a change of pace). Maybe we could have a crossing guard there during busy times not just during special events??? Restrict some left turns (like out of the gas station, etc.)? More can be done to stop the chaos............thank you to the "flag" people for trying.

A sad state! | 2015-05-19 17:58:38

I have a better idea. Let's all wear bright yellow or orange vests, sound horns, use flares, count to ten, then walk across. Is this for real? How many deaths at this intersection? I recall the answer is none. So what is the issue? It is a cross walk!! Look both ways, make eye contact with the driver, and cross. Simple. People make this crosswalk out to the the path of death. Dare to cross Washington Street: Will you make it alive? Sarcasm aside, the crosswalks are just as safe as any other in surrounding towns and in the state. If anyone did any research, compare this to other intersections, and you will then realize, the crosswalk is safe for all.

Scott | 2015-05-19 17:11:49

If you went back years and years to when this "vision" started, we are approaching a Saturday Night Live skit. In the end, some group will get what they want despite the opinion of the experts they have hired and paid for.

Bob | 2015-05-19 15:00:02

Several towns in MA (Arlington, Lexington, etc...) have used flags to implement their Safe Routes to School Program, which is administered by MassDOT. Who took away the flags downtown? The HPD?

MK | 2015-05-19 13:27:38

Why take these flags down... because they make it safer to cross. . because it was not something the "town did not pay to have studied" ? WHY.... this town or someone was trying to do something pro active... We need an answer why these are gone!

WHy? | 2015-05-19 12:52:01

I LOVE THIS! I love the 'spirit' of this and the person/people that created this for us. With the Yellow House shop gone..i've pretty much lost the need to cross anymore...saved my life by closing..;)

kate | 2015-05-19 11:59:26

My husband said he's seen these "cross-walk flags" in a few cities, Salt Lake City being one of them. They make look a bit silly, but what a great, inexpensive idea!

Kim Ross | 2015-05-19 11:30:34

The town has taken down the flags. I guess that simple solutions are not in the cards for Holliston. I thought they were a great idea.

phylis | 2015-05-19 08:28:57

Sarah... why blame just the kids... I have three and I think this is a great idea.. . at least you can see it better than just the "body" walking across the street.. . Kids are in general great and do not "steal" stop blaming kids with out proof..... and I would rather have "tacky" than be dead!

not just the kids | 2015-05-19 08:26:35

I wonder how long it will take before kids steal these and use them to play with. Kind of tacky, but if it saves a life then I say do it!

Sarah | 2015-05-19 07:07:29

Let's also include red capes: Make it really interesting.

Tom | 2015-05-19 06:51:38

The flags are a nice touch, but they are NOT the solution to either pedestrian or vehicular traffic problems downtown. But if it makes us feel better about not having modern traffic design/control at a series of dangerous intersections downtown, then let's just all flag it up!

Hungry Hippo | 2015-05-19 04:52:16