The Long Beach Public Schools are leading a call to action to help ensure safety on Lido Boulevard, requesting the Town of Hempstead to reduce the speed limit on it. The primary purpose of the request is to increase the safety for students who need to cross the road on bicycles or as pedestrians as they travel to and from school.

Superintendent of Schools David Weiss sent a letter urging Town of Hempstead Supervisor Anthony Santino to enact legislation that would lower the speed limit from 40 to 30 miles per hour from the Loop Parkway to Prescott Street in Lido Beach. The plan has received immediate support from Councilwoman Erin Sweeney and Mr. Weiss expects other endorsements to follow.  

“We have been meeting with town and county officials, and we all agree the current traffic conditions put the safety of our young adults at risk on a daily basis,” Mr. Weiss said. He noted that in particular, many drivers accelerate beyond the 40 mph speed as they exit the Loop during the morning rush hour when students are crossing Lido Boulevard, and they slow down, but not to the 30 mph limit at the school crossings at Blackheath Road.   

More than 700 Long Beach Middle School and High School students travel on foot and bicycle during rush hours – the most common times for vehicles to exceed the maximum permitted speed. While Lido Boulevard contains several school crossings and school zones, drivers continue to overlook the posted signs. Despite the schools’ efforts to provide bicycle and pedestrian safety awareness programs, speed-related automobile accidents are a longstanding issue.

“No amount of education produces safe travel if drivers create dangerous situations,” Mr. Weiss said. “We believe a lowering of the speed limit will change the mindset of drivers as they pass through this area.”