‘Beyond Disappointed': State Lawmaker Says Boston Needs to Do More to Address Traffic Safety Concerns

Senator Nick Collins lives nearby where a 3-year-old boy was killed Wednesday while he was on the sidewalk with his nanny and 4-year-old sister

What to Know

  • A 3-year-old boy was killed and his 4-year-old sister injured when a minivan plowed into a stroller in South Boston on Wednesday.
  • Sen. Nick Collins lives nearby where the crash happened; he says he's repeatedly asked city/state leaders to remedy traffic safety concerns.
  • Since 2016, there have been more than 50 car accidents along L Street. Wednesday's crash happened at intersection of L and East 6th streets.

Following the death of a 3-year-old boy in South Boston, one lawmaker says the state and city should be doing more to address traffic safety concerns.

Senator Nick Collins (D) lives nearby where the accident happened. On Wednesday, the little boy was on the sidewalk with his nanny and 4-year-old sister when a van and car collided in the intersection adjacent to them. The crash then sent the van onto the sidewalk, striking the child.

“We are beyond disappointed at this point,” Collins said.

In the last few years, Collins said the neighborhood surrounding L and E 6th Streets, where the accident occurred, has become inundated with drivers from the highway who cut through South Boston to get into the city faster. The result is congestion in their residential streets, which Collins says he has repeatedly asked city and state leaders to remedy.

“People just can’t wait,” Collins explained. “The city is growing and people who are trying to cut through Boston to get to work downtown aren’t treating the communities that they’re flying through with respect.”

In response, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh acknowledged the problem needs to be addressed, however, he would not go into further detail on Thursday.

“Right now it’s packed with cars and people driving,” said Walsh. “We can talk about moving forward next week. Today is about the family.”

Since 2016, there have been more than 50 car accidents along L Street. At the intersection of Wednesday’s crash, there are no stoplights to control traffic flow.

“The residents here need to be protected. This is a known issue. This shouldn’t have been necessary,” said parent Lauren Flaherty.

While much of the concern was on the city roadways, Collins says the state also needs to do more to control traffic that diverts from their own roads, such as Day Bouvelard, which serve as connectors to the highway.

In response, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation says it has been coordinating with other agencies to “evaluate traffic patterns relative to congestion and safety” at locations throughout South Boston.

Collins hopes that this recent crash will lead to more than just conversation about the issue. He expects both the city and state to begin implementing changes in the near future.

“I live half a block away,” Collins said, “We are frustrated.”

The fatal crash remains under investigation. Boston police are seeking to obtain videos or photos that may have captured the crash or its aftermath. They are asking anyone who witnessed it to come forward.

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