City restripes crosswalks near elementary school after student hit by car

Update posted Sept. 20, 2017:

The city has addressed safety concerns in Kaimuki.

Some residents called the faded crosswalks at intersections of 19th Avenue a safety hazard after a Waialae Elementary Public Charter School student was hit by a car. She was not seriously hurt.

The day after our initial story aired, city crews restriped those crosswalks.

“I’d just like to thank KHON for covering this topic. It’s great for us to see somebody is interested in it, because we feel like we’ve been screaming about it for some years now, but not getting very much attention,” said Robert Haak, president of Friends of Waialae School, the campus PTA program. “So if it wasn’t for the coverage you guys gave us, I don’t think we would’ve been able to get these new stripes on the street.”

The city Department of Facility Maintenance is asking for the public’s help in identifying specific locations where existing crosswalks need re-marking.

You can call the department hotline at (808) 768-4381.

Original story posted Sept. 18, 2017:

Parents in Kaimuki are pleading with drivers to slow down and watch for pedestrians after a middle school student was hit by a car.

A parent reached out to KHON2 using our Report It feature, saying her child was walking home from school when the vehicle hit her.

She wasn’t seriously hurt, but parents say one thing they’d like to see addressed is the faded crosswalks.

Some parents we spoke with said they’re especially concerned for the younger children walking to and from Waialae Elementary School.

Parents told KHON2 they’re on edge, but not entirely surprised after hearing about the middle school student who was hit.

“It’s really busy in the mornings and afternoons here. There’s cars that are just flying through here,” said Robert Haak, president of Friends of Waialae School, the campus PTA program. “It certainly gets us nervous because we just know living here that something’s going to happen. It’s just a matter of when, not if.”

Haak says pedestrian safety in the area has been a long-time concern.

“It’s not just from little kids that live around here. It’s from older people too. Older people trying to walk down to get the bus or shopping at Times. It takes them forever to cross the street because they’re just so scared about it,” he said.

We’re told a big issue is the high traffic at Harding and 19th Avenue. We watched as a young student was hesitant to cross the street.

“You can just see from that 30 seconds, it’s just so not safe,” Haak said.

The posted speed limit is 25 mph, but parents tell us they constantly see cars speeding up and down the road.

On top of that, crosswalks are faded, so parents made flags to make children more visible.

“We put it on the four major intersections here. We made about 100 of these flags so it’s great when we see people using them,” Haak said.

We asked the city about the faded crosswalks and a spokesman told KHON2 residents are encouraged to call the Department of Facility Maintenance if a crosswalk needs attention.

There weren’t any crosswalks where the middle school student was hit, so Haak said the PTA would like to see more signage, additional and repainted crosswalks, and speed bumps if possible.

We’re told the school is also trying to work with Honolulu police to get a crossing guard.

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