I am a resident of Carefree and I and my dog try to cross Tom Darlington at the Ridgeview intersection on a daily basis, which becomes an adventure. While there is an on-demand flashing red light, it is most often ignored by motorists, especially North-bound; some even waving gaily as they speed through.
Part of the problem is the geography of Tom Darlington North-bound. The road rises and then starts to descend, making the crosswalk difficult to see. Compounding the problem, the “warning” sign is virtually next to the walk, giving little advance notice.
The city of Carefree is well aware of the issue, having held at least two meetings entertaining citizens’ complaints. While several measures have been proposed, the city has hired an “expert” to study the problem, which is akin to referring it to committee, where the matter dies. The city has also been advised the Sheriff’s Department does nothing to try to improve the situation. While officers stop speeders, especially South-bound on Darlington, they are conspicuously absent as motorists sail through the crosswalk as the lights flash.
The city is obviously on notice that something must be done before tragedy strikes. The obvious solution is a real on-demand stoplight – not the pale imitation now ignored – and vigorous enforcement by the Sheriff. Absent this action, someone will be hit and the city and county will have liability, given their lax attitude towards the problem
cc: Sheriff Paull Penzone
Michael W. Carnahan