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Van driver smashes into light pole in West Roxbury

Van crash on Centre Street in West Roxbury

Scott reports the driver of this van climbed out a little bloody after hitting a light pole in front of Hennigan Insurance on Centre Street this morning, knocking down the street light and activating his airbags.

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But sure thing, folks, it’s the “bike lobby” that fabricated the idea that Centre Street is an unacceptable four-lane speedway through a dense commercial district. Keep telling yourself that, Keogh-ites, as drivers kill pedestrians and crash into light poles there.

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Maybe someone was drinking too much Hennigan’s!

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The planned road diet cannot come soon enough!

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How would that stop a single car crash?

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How would the "road diet" have helped? (Serious question.) I think the only change at that location would be the addition of a bike lane.

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almost invariably lead to higher speeds. If you doubt this, visit any and all roads near you.

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...but this location is right between two crosswalks. Look home much damage this guy did hitting a metal pole set in concrete and then picture him instead hitting a person at that speed. Road diet = slower traffic = less fatalities.

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A single lane in each direction results in drivers operating at much safer speeds than two lanes. There no opportunity for high-speed passing or weaving. It's also much easier for traffic that is crossing or turning onto the street, since there are fewer lanes to negotiate. (Less opportunity for a T-bone crash.)

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This section of Centre St. is part of the proposed road diet, which is planned to run from Holy Name rotary to Spring St. It's not just a bike lane, or even really about bike lanes. It's a narrowing of the street from four lanes to three (one for left turns, one for each direction of travel). Drivers are less likely to lose control of slower vehicles, especially when they aren't constantly weaving between two lanes.

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Good thing the accident took place before students from the Lyndon were walking in that area.

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Business owners are having clients sign a petition against Road Diet.

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But it doesn't have anything to do with the reality of nonsense like this, which results from speeding, which results from a two lane road encouraging high speeds, passing, and running people off the road.

Sorry, but reality always wins - one way or another!

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Except when the other side is doing it, no?

And to be clear, I think that going from 4 lanes to 2 + 1 is good, but dismissing local concerns is not the way to act in a system like ours. If you don't believe it, think it over while driving down the Southwest Expressway from the Inner Loop some day.

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Regulatory decisions about safety are generally not left to be determined by local passions. Is this how you would want fire codes determined? If not, then maybe your statement about traffic safety doesn't make much sense.

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There was a petition circulated on Facebook. It wasn’t against the road diet, but against alarmist misinformation they claimed would result from the road diet. Most untrue among them, the lie that it will increase emergency response times. Outright lies to scare old people into signing a petition (and with no addresses of the signers, so likely many that don’t live here).
I can’t get over this idea that somehow the business owners hold some trump card. Newsflash, they don’t. They’ve been heard, and heard, they’ve had a say. They aren’t city planners or safety experts. There’s no reason to believe they somehow know what’s best for the neighborhood. They parrot the complaints of their most ornery and entitled customers, whining about parking. I’d bet many of them are really more worried about what will happen after the road diet, when like happens after every road diet, businesses see an increase in traffic and property values rise; their rent will increase. I routinely shop on Centre Street and we have many great merchants. Others, I’m convinced any success they achieve is in spite of themselves. The above mentioned petition is a great example. Somebody thought they were doing a stroke of business and all they did was create an irrelevant list of names opposing nothing of consequence. If there was a credible business person behind it they’d have realized the petition should oppose the actual BTD proposal and document resident addresses. For what it’s worth there was a petition circulated briefly this summer that gathered names and addresses in favor of the proposal itself.

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...of the business I visit on a regular basis ask me to sign something opposing the Road Diet I will politely inform them that this will cause me to spend my money elsewhere. I will ask my fellow shoppers who are in favor of the Road Diet to do the same.

Note: I have been in an out of business along the stretch since the proposal was announced and not one business has asked me to sign anything for or against the RD. I'm curious what business you speak of.

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I guess you can get there from here... but I can't figure out how this guy pulled off that angle with such force. Maybe a last minute shimmy after collision.

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Especially since no-one speeds on Centre St so he can't have been going over 20 mph.

Right?

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Do you think it's fine to crash into a pole as long as you're going 20 mph?

I prefer to focus less on speed, and more on not crashing into people and things.

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Conservation of angular momentum (relative to the pole).

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Four to three conversion can’t happen soon enough. I can’t wait to feel safe walking that stretch of Centre Street.

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you've gotta understand, cars are going to hit you.

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on the light pole, so...

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You're the Magoo Sez of this comment... you add nothing to the discourse.
People driving contractor vehicles are the worst drivers in the city per my observation. If you're in a crosswalk and that pickup truck is making a right, you'd better sprint.

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when people stop victim blaming. Until then, I'm going to continue wondering how people can see these kinds of news stories day in and day out and still say "well do we know that person who got hit in the sidewalk/crosswalk wasn't on their phone"

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They've got a valid point to make, not just throwing garbage around looking for attention. There's a huge difference.

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Notmagoo.

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I hope the driver's phone didn't shatter when it was dropped upon the van's impact

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It doesn't help if someone comes around you at speed and runs you off the road.

This doesn't happen in a vacuum.

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If you don't know for sure that's how this happened, then it would be better if you didn't comment.

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Assuming that's where this driver gets his insurance, you have to give him some credit for real foresight. Barely even has to file a claim -- just yell "hey guys, look out the window!" and he's all set. Convenient!

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Good one Observatorius!

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will be doing some serious investigating before they pay for that.

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This is why sidewalks in any location that don't have mature street trees, planters, or a lane of parked cars to buffer an errant vehicle should have stout bollards like what is done in many European countries. Keep cars off sidewalks like a guard rail without looking like a guard rail.

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Keep cars off of the bike lane that is between the parked cars and the sidewalk with bollards.

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I forgot does Hennigan have the correct time or is it the Bank.

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Framing auto crashes in terms of active voice is something most news outlets suck at doing. They often say "car crashes into pedestrian" or "bicyclist hit by car." This lazy framing automatically siphons away responsibility from the driver -- who is operating a dangerous machine -- to other parties.

Even though it's just a lightpost here, this crash could have killed someone if they had been standing there. So it's good your headline clearly states who is responsible -- the driver of the van.

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That light pole came out of nowhere, officer...

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