MOLINE, Ill. (KWQC) – Some parents at John Deere Middle school are breathing a sigh of relief. Moline city council unanimously voted to put temporary safety measures in place at 12th Street and 21st Avenue.
A student was crossing near that intersection on Friday. Tuesday night eight parents and three students pleaded with Moline council members to make a change.
“Those screams will haunt me for a long time,” said an emotional Elora Tapia.
She is an 8th grade student at John Deere Middle.
“I am begging you to do something about this,” she said through tears to city council members. “I have multiple friends, a lot of them who cross that street, and I have had to see them run out of the way of cars, time and time again.”
Moline police say the Jan. 19 accident is still under investigation. But newly sworn in Chief of Police John Hitchcock said the department believes the student and driver had obstructed views when the incident occurred.
Tuesday night, Jan. 23, parents asked for everything from a temporary stop sign to a permanent stoplight.
“Whether there's going to be an immediate 100 percent solution, I don't know, but so that it doesn't continue to linger open I think immediately there needs to be tasked a crossing guard there,” said parent Tony Tapia about the intersection where the child was struck.
His and other’s concerns did not fall on deaf ears.
Alderman unanimously passed a motion placing crossing guards at 12th Street and 21st Avenue. Council members have instructed Moline Police to use an officer at this intersection until a crossing guard can be hired.
They have also agreed a rolling stop sign will be placed on 11th Street at the same time the barriers are in use there. It is expected to be ready in a few days.
Parents say they are happy with these solutions.
“Extremely impressed,” said parent Patricia Lang. “All of them were about a resolution.”
Lang is one of the parents who helped lift the car off the child on Friday. She says she is thrilled with council's response, and she hopes to see a long-term solution soon.
“I think all of us still want flashing lights,” she said.
Council passed a motion instructing the Chief Hitchcock to work with the city’s traffic committee to come up with a long-term solution. They will be looking at implementing something at 12th Street and 21st Avenue as well as 19th Avenue and 11th Street.
Traffic data shared with council members on Tuesday indicated Friday’s accident was the first near that intersection since 2012.
Other traffic data showed more accidents involving what police assume to be students, based on the time of incident and victim’s age, and driver near 19th Avenue in the same area. According to those numbers, there were at least three since 2014.