CREATED Sep. 23, 2013
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Everyone was stunned Friday when a collision at the corner of Bonanza and Lamb sent a truck careening into a bus stop shelter injuring three small children.
"As soon as young children are involved it takes it to another level as far as concern. And immediately you want to know where was this shelter? What Exactly Happened?" RTC Southern Nevada General Manager Tina Quigley said.
Even as they analyzed the situation, RTC leaders were hit with criticism that they weren't doing enough to protect riders.
But the commission’s general manager says they've moved hundreds of shelters since 2008 but added moving 1600 shelters takes time and money.
"Since 2008 we've relocated or moved back 600 shelters, we've spent about $15 million to do that," Quigley said.
In an ideal situation the RTC would have many of the bus stops built with a turn out lane for buses and a sidewalk separating passengers from traffic, but that also requires businesses to give up part of their planters, which can create problems.
"The way we would like to do that is through a partnership with the property owner, if we can't do that eminent domain is a consideration," Quigley said.
Erin Breen works in UNLV's Transportation Research Center and is also a member of the RTC's advisory board.
She said each month they are looking at three shelters that can't be moved back because of various issues, including walls in residential neighborhoods.
"It's impossible to move those shelters back, so do you inconvenience the driver. There is so much that goes into this, it seems like a simple fix, but it's not," Breen said.
One thing that experts said could help prevent accidents is driver awareness. That’s why the RTC is planning a pedestrian safety month in conjunction with local cities.
It’s scheduled to kick off in early October with a social media campaign as well as increased enforcement from local police.