Safety Committee gives update to Harveys Lake council

By Eileen Godin - | March 15th, 2016 10:35 pm

By Eileen Godin

HARVEYS LAKE — Borough council heard an update from the citizen-lead Safety Committee on ideas to make Lakeside Drive safer for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians Tuesday.

The safety push for Lakeside Drive, a 9-mile, winding, two-lane roadway, began after 31-year-old triathlete Paula Jones was struck and killed by an allegedly drunk driver on Lakeside Drive in June 2015. A hit-and-run on March 9, left bicyclist, Kurt Manganella, 52, with four broken ribs, lung and hip contusions and other bruises and abrasions.

The Safety Committee formed in July 2015 and had worked with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and the borough council to increase safety on the state-owned roadway.

“I live on the lake,” Greg Fellerman, borough resident and member of the Safety Committee said. “There is about 70 feet line-of-sight from my home (to a curve of Lakeside Drive). This does not give drivers enough time to stop.”

The borough heeded PennDOT’s recommendation to decrease the speed limit this summer from 35 to 30 miles per hour, making traffic move slower around the lake.

Fellerman said electronic speed limit signs and crosswalks are planned for this summer.

“Some people in the audience who may think this is not enough,” Fellerman said. “This is something we have to do slowly — I like to use the term baby steps.”

The Borough Police Department is also on board, enforcing road rules on all Lakeside Drive users.

Harveys Lake Police Chief Charles Musial is working to educate bicyclists and pedestrians of the rules of the road.

“You (bicyclists) can’t ride three in a row,” Fellerman said. “You can’t cut off ambulances.”

“You (bicyclists) have to stop at stop signs,” Ed Kelly, borough council member said.

The police force has started cracking down on cyclist and pedestrian violations. According to the police report, Carole Samson, borough council member, noted four bicyclists were cited for violations and four joggers were cited for being on the wrong side of the road.

“Cyclists, motorists and pedestrians need to co-exist here,” Fellerman said.

In other news, Councilwoman Michel’e Boice announced the new police station received its final building inspection approval, and the police department can move in.

“We will have an open house so the people of Harveys Lake can see what they have,” Boice said.

The next meeting of the Harveys Lake Borough Council is slated for 7:30 p.m. April 19 in the municipal building.

Reach Eileen Godin at 570-991-6387 or on Twitter @TLNews.