Breakstone, White & Gluck was so pleased to support a family event hosted by the Brockton Police Department and other community partners this past weekend. This was a special event because Brockton Police gave away both free car seats and bicycle helmets to local children and families. The goal was to prevent injuries. Many families struggle to get started with car seats and bicycle helmets and end up using them improperly.
The Brockton Police Department partnered with Copeland Toyota and Buckle Up for Life to give families free car seats. Brockton Police has four officers who are certified child passenger safety technicians. They can speak English, Spanish, Cape Verdean Creole and Hatian Creole. Especially after the pandemic, this event was a good opportunity for parents and caregivers to receive a free car seat, have it installed by a police officer and ask questions.
Breakstone, White & Gluck donated the children’s bicycle helmets from our Project KidSafe campaign. Brockton Police helped the children fit their new helmets.
Photo: From left to right, Shahzad Shahab, general manager of Copeland Toyota, then Maria Rivas and her son wearing a Project KidSafe helmet. Center is Brockton Police Chief Emmaneul Gomes, then Lt. Brenda Perez and Brockton Mayor Robert Sullivan on the right.
The mayor of Brockton has announced a plan to improve safety for those walking in the city. The city has seen an increase in pedestrian accidents, which have recently killed 8 pedestrians and injured 75 others. Seven of the eight pedestrian deaths have occurred since August 12.
Two victims were children, and in one case, police are still searching for the hit-and-run driver. In 2013, the city saw one fatal pedestrian accident.
Mayor Bill Carpenter proposed the safety plan on Monday, which draws on resources from a number of state and local agencies, including the Massachusetts State Police, Brockton Police, the city’s Board of Health, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, the Safe Routes Alliance and Brockton Area Transit.
His plan will focus on three areas: engineering, enforcement and education. Some of the measures still require approval from the city Finance Committee.
Educational Awareness Campaign. The city will launch a pedestrian safety awareness campaign to educate both drivers and pedestrians. One focus will be to reduce use of electronic devices and cell phones by everyone on the road. Public service announcements, video documentaries and other safety materials will be introduced to students in Brockton Public Schools.
Increased Walking Patrols. These will be expanded in high-traffic areas, to allow officers to provide pedestrians and cyclists with safety information when they put themselves in harm’s way.
Increased Traffic Patrols in High-Crash Areas. The Massachusetts State Police will work with Brockton to increase patrols in high traffic areas.
Scarecrow Patrol Cars. Brockton Police will deploy “scarecrow” cruisers at some dangerous intersections. These have no officers, but are meant to put drivers who do not know that on alert.
Clearing Sidewalks. The city’s Board of Health will conduct enforcement to make sure sidewalks are clear and can be safely used by pedestrians.
Traffic Signals. The city will consider adding pedestrian countdown features to the traffic signals on Belmont Street. At the same time, the Mass Department of Transportation is now conducting a review of traffic signals across the city.
Brockton is not the only community which has seen an increase in pedestrian accidents. Nationwide, fatal pedestrian accidents increased 6 percent from 2011 to 2012, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s most recent figures. More than 33,000 were killed or about one every two hours.