Over the past 20 years, three fatalities have occurred due to
car accidents on Walnut Avenue, according to Cranford Police.
The speed limit in front of Cranford Public Library is currently 25 miles per hour, but further down the road it is 35 miles per hour when school is not in session. At the last committee meeting, commissioners held the final ordinance to lower the entire limit of the road to 25, but now they must wait on Union County's approval.
In 2012, a driver was killed in a one-car crash on Walnut Avenue, police reported to the Cranford Chronicle. In 1998, a driver died in a one-car-crash, but had a medical episode before the accident, and in 1996, a driver was killed in a one-car crash while under the influence, the article said.
There have been no fatalities involving pedestrians,
bicyclists or passengers of vehicles over the last 20 years, police said.
In 2013, 17 vehicle crashes occurred somewhere along Walnut Avenue between South Avenue and Raritan Road. Of those 17, only two involved injured, police said.
Freeholder B.J. Kowalski, a Cranford resident, has been pushing the speed limit change to the county. Committeeman Kevin Campbell said it is with a “glimmer of hope” that they can change the speed limit this time around thanks to Kowalski’s perseverance with the county.
Mayor Thomas Hannen explained in an August meeting that lowering the speed limit would just be safer for the kids.
However, a study in 2006 reported that the 85th percentile speed on Walnut Avenue near Lenhome Drive was 40 mph, the Chronicle Reported. The same study recognized that the 85th percentile speed on the roadway between South Avenue and Lincoln Avenue East was 35 mph.
The 85th percentile speed is the industry-accepted value for establishing speed limits, Cranford Police explained.