Have you ever paid attention to all the signs and crosswalk warnings on Fort Myers Beach?
As you drive down Estero Blvd. you will see signs, warnings, flashing lights, poles sticking up in the center with stop signs on them, formations of multiple poles, etc. There is no uniform “crosswalk warning” on this island.
We all know that we have an older population, then add on the tourists, then add on the Snowbirds and to make the situation worse, we have no continuity with our cross walks. Each one is different and a driver is inundated with a plethora of various signs.
This one is just a sign with white marks on the road ahead.
Then there is this mess of things sticking up that the pedestrian walks through the middle of these poles.
Now this one, has the signs and then has the signs in the road, in various areas that have stop signs on them. These are the ones that confuse Snowbirds and causes them to hit their brakes because they see a stop sign.
Here we have a busy area and they have no flashing lights, no poles in the center of the road, but they have 2 crosswalk road signs. One is a warning and the other is the crosswalk.
Here is a crosswalk on a curve in the road, yet they just have a sign here.
This is another one of the stop sign types that increases the chances of an accident because as the Snowbirds try to navigate down Estero Blvd., they are hitting their brakes when they see the 4 ft tall poles in the middle of the road, that have a small stop sign on them.
We have Snowbirds and visitors, ignoring the designated crosswalks and they will jump out in front of moving cars and make up their own crosswalks. To top it off, I have even seen people wearing dark clothes, at dusk doing this! Do they have a death wish? They are barely visible to me, let alone to a Snowbird or to someone new to the area.
I have been behind Snowbirds that are hitting their brakes at every crosswalk, every pole in the center of the road, every sign,etc. There is no way a driver could read every sign and warning sign that is along Estero Blvd, let alone grasp the concept that each crosswalk is marked differently.
Anyone who has ever played the game “Frogger” knows what it is like to drive along Estero Blvd.
If you happen to know the logic of the signs on Estero Blvd., please feel free to share with the rest of us. I think it is time that FMB modernizes the crosswalks and install the LED, flashing light path crosswalks.
Sarasota County was able to get 7 illuminated crosswalks installed. They saved money by buying directly from the manufacturer. Maybe Fort Myers Beach needs to see how this other beach town was able to improve the safety as well as the aesthetics of the signs.