Blame the economic meltdown if there are more automobile and pedestrian accidents in DeKalb County in the coming years. The County is facing a severe funds crunch, and road repair and building projects are expected to suffer as a result.
DeKalb County last year spent $19 million on construction of new roads and sidewalks, and undertaking bridge repair. This year, that amount has been drastically slashed to $5.5 million. Every year, the County invests heavily in street repavement efforts that ensure that motorists drive not just efficiently, but also safely. Investments in previous years have gone into building sidewalks, so pedestrians can walk safely without fear of accidents, and constructing of new medians that can allow vehicle movement on roads to flow smoothly and prevent crashes. In previous years, funding from the road building budget has been used to install new streetlights that can reduce nighttime accidents. All these efforts are expected to suffer this year as the County struggles with balancing the shortage of funding, with numerous road and sidewalk repair, construction and improvement projects that it needs to undertake.
It seems like the financial meltdown and the economic crisis will begin pinching DeKalb County residents where it really hurts – their safety on county roads. You know there’s a meltdown in full swing not only when unemployment figures are up, but also when a cash shortage is obstructing efforts to make our cities and roads safe for all. Road building and repair efforts are necessary every year to repair eroded and battered stretches of road that can expose motorists to risk for automobile accidents. For instance, when traffic safety programs are cut because of funding shortages, you end up with battered and faded street signs malfunctioning street lights, uneven road surfaces that pose a risk of loss of control and rollovers, and other road defects that can cause accidents. Besides, during a recession, county authorities are also forced to cut down funding for the redesign of dangerous roads that may place motorists at an increased risk of collisions.
With the financial meltdown showing no signs of abating, take it from this Atlanta personal injury lawyer who’s seen her share of accidents caused by defective roads – during tough times, it falls back on motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcycle riders to make efforts to ensure their own safety. Keep within speed limits, avoid stupid driving behaviors like drunk driving, or using a cell phone when you drive. Pedestrians must be additionally careful, and avoid walking into oncoming traffic or crossing anywhere they please.