Last week, residents of Levona St. in Modiin heard a horrible noise coming from the direction of the road. It was half an hour past midnight, and the neighbors that had been woken up by the noise went outside to discover the dead body of a dog lying on the street. "It was a shocking sight," they said. "The street and cars next to it were covered in blood."
The dog's owner said that the Viola Transportation bus that hit the dog had not even stopped to help out. "It was a very sad sight, but not a shocking one," says Marina Siddy, who lives on the street and witnessed the incident. "Levona St is a relatively quiet street, but for some reason, bus drivers that want to shorten their trips sometimes drive on it an excessive speeds. It is the street that connects Emek Ayalon with Marlaz Center. The address is on the wall, but for some reason nobody seems to be bothered. Today it's a dog, and tomorrow a pedestrian could be hit."
The neighbors share how they had tried to alert the Municipal Transportation Committee a number of times, but that they had never received a response. "We asked that they forbid buses from entering the road, or that they at least install speed bumps (bumpers) in order to decrease the speed, but nothing happens," adds Siddy. "The street is life-threatening."
A Transportation Committee member, and the head of the "Modiin Shel Kulanu" movement, Sharon Maoz, shares that the local residents had warned about the phenomenon several times. "I call out to the Committee Chairman to implement suggestions that have been made in the past regarding Levona St., and to get the buses out of there. It's a shame that accidents have to keep happening on order for there to be a transportation reform in the area."
Transportation Portfolio Holder Chanan Bernstein responded that things have been done to prevent accidents on the street and that more will be done, as well. "The inter-city buses have been diverted from the road in the past," Bernstein told mynet. "We acted according to a traffic engineer's opinion, who determined that no need has been formed for a bumper. Despite this, the topic will be raised for discussion once again by the Transportation Committee. We will go over the data with the Central Road Sign Authority."
The Modiin Municipality has replied that "The municipality has been working with the Ministry of Transportation for a number of months in order to place speed bumps on the street, as was done at similar places in the city. Three traffic investigations were one on the street which checked the driving speed on the street at different areas, and found that the average speed does not meet the Ministry of Transportation's criteria for installing speed bumps. Even so, the municipality is continuing its attempts to receive permission to place speed bumps on this street."
Viola Transportation responded that they have no details on this difficult event that took place, and that "it must be taken in consideration that bus drivers do not exceed the permitted speeds during city trips. The company's drivers drive carefully and pay close attention to the law and to their passengers and the coming-and-going passerby on the city's streets, and do not drive at speeds that are higher than allowed as a whole. The objective road conditions do not allow the possibility of "excessive speeding" as one would say, which include speed bumps on the road, traffic lights, bus stops every few meters, and the detection systems in the vehicles that can show the drivers' speeds at any given time."
Wednesday, October 13, 2010