A RESIDENT WRITES: Although yesterday’s tragedy in Leonia didn’t involve an NJ Transit bus, it is only a matter of time until there is a bus accident involving a commuter and an NJT bus.
In the 22 years that I’ve lived and raised my family in Leonia, I have commuted daily on the 166. I have had at least two incidents when a 166 has come so close to me in the middle of Broad Avenue as I am frantically standing in the street to flag down a bus that I was terrified.
Complaint calls to NJT have resulted in my being told many times that commuters are supposed to stand in the street and flag down the bus and that the drivers cannot stop to determine whether the person in the bus stop wants the bus or is just standing there.
So standing the middle of a dangerously busy street is the best practice recommended by NJT.
166 buses frequently fly down Broad at high speed, passing bus stops and commuters. If and when the 166 stops at Broad and Harrison (the one that I use most often), very often it doesn’t stop at the curb but in the middle of Broad, requiring commuters to walk into traffic to board.
At least the Dominos delivery truck doesn’t block the bus stop any longer. It took many calls to Dominos HQ over several years to get their delivery trucks to stop parking in the bus stop to make deliveries during rush hours.
Commuting on NJT is not only the horror we know it to be, it is life-threatening. [Police] Chief [Thomas] Rowe is so right: Traffic is killing people in Leonia.
My prayers go out to the family and friends of Leyla Kan and to the people of Leonia and responders who saw the horror yesterday.
Leonians are very lucky this didn’t happen during a school day. As wonderful as our crossing guards are, we all have seen instances when drivers completely disregard the guards’ directions.
We can only hope that this event will result in some safety measures.
By Lucy Curci-Gonzalez
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