|October 28, 2002|
With the few numbers of curbs that announce the end of the sidewalk, and the
great number of wheelchair ramps with greater or lesser slopes, I have
frequently seen family members who could not be aware where the sidewalks ended
and the street crossing begin. Additionally, many intersections are complex,
even in this small city, and family and friends have had great difficulty
knowing when the Walk light was on for safe crossing.
There are persons who are blind and visually impaired who believe that they have such skills that allow safe crossing in all circumstances. Now, whether or not this is true, it seems surprising for any group to say that the "ease and grace" with which they travel is necessarily typical of all persons who are visually impaired and blind. In the best of conditions, most persons who are blind and visually impaired and who have received orientation and mobility training can travel independently and safely. However, much of modern America is not "the best of conditions," as far as travelling without sight. Additional information is required in many cases to allow persons information about the location of streets and the status of crosswalk lights.
I have tried to get the city to install an ASP near us for use by our son, and the city has pretty much ignored the issue. I have requested an evaluation of the intersection and the city has, again, pretty much ignored the issue. Regulations with teeth would help establish a local travel environment that provides enough access to information that our 12 year old son could travel safely independently.
index previous comment next comment