North Haven residents call for safety measures after pedestrian killed

North Haven residents call for safety measures after pedestrian killed

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NORTH HAVEN — First Selectman Michael Freda is working with residents and police to determine new traffic safety measures after a resident was struck and killed last week while walking with her family on Ridge Road. 

Maureen Munzner, 57, was walking with her two children in the area of 1500 Ridge Road when she was struck by a red Ford Fusion on March 11 around 5:30 p.m. The car drove off and Munzner was pronounced dead soon after the crash.

The community has been mourning Munzner, who Freda knew as a member of the Ridge Road Parent Teacher Association. 

“I always found Maureen to be one of our remarkable citizens who was always looking to give back and do more for the community,” he said. 

After the incident, Ridge Road residents gathered to discuss how to slow down vehicles on the residential street. 

“A lot of people complain about this road,” resident Kristine Henson said. “We look out our window and people seriously fly by like 60 mph.” 

Henson, who has lived on Ridge Road for about eight months, organized a gathering for neighbors.

“We just felt like we needed to do something to get our voices heard,” Henson said.

Freda also attended the March 14 meeting. 

“I tried to listen last night to all the residents … (and) to tell them that I’m going to do everything I can to see how we can calm the traffic,” Freda said, adding that the efforts would address speeding throughout the town, not just on Ridge Road. 

Freda said some options may include adding more sidewalks, raised surfaces, temporary or permanent speed bumps, or stop signs. National safety standards would be considered to determine the effectiveness of each. A town-wide “traffic calming study” could also be an option, which would bring in experts to provide recommendations. 

Sidewalks would have to be approved by a majority of homeowners in the affected area, Freda said. 

The group is primarily calling for stop signs and/or speed humps to be installed since the road is a straightaway. They are also open to installing sidewalks, but Henson said while they would provide a safe place to walk, they wouldn’t stop speeding. The neighborhood currently has some patches of sidewalk, which Henson guessed is less than a mile. 

Residents created two petitions last week, one for stop signs and speed humps, and the other specifically for sidewalks. Henson said she is working to create online versions for more people to sign. 

“A lot of people are asking me how to get more (petitions), how to get involved,” Henson said. 

She said a specific group may be formed to focus on the efforts, and that updates will be posted to the “You're Probably From North Haven, CT If...” Facebook forum. 

Police have seized the vehicle involved in the incident and have obtained search warrants for the suspect’s cell phone records and the vehicle. No arrest had been made as of Monday evening.
Twitter: @baileyfaywright


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