Fimian’s Transportation Plan would Endanger Commuters & First Responders

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    ( – promoted by KathyinBlacksburg)

    In a front cover story in the latest issue of the Fairfax County Chronicle, Connolly, Fimian to Square Off Again, both candidates outline their positions on improving transportation in Northern Virginia.  Gerry Connolly points out his record of securing funding for some of the area’s biggest projects, such as completion of the Fairfax County Parkway and rail to Dulles.  

    Keith Fimian has a plan that would be interesting if it weren’t so dangerous:  eliminate the shoulders which are used for break-downs and for first responders to get to the scene of an accident:

    If you go to California, the 405 and the 5 have no shoulder… I would use every available inch of space to make a lane and handle the problem that way.

    If you’ve driven in Los Angeles during rush hour, you know how well that works.  Fimian’s solution of installing electronic signs to warn drivers of upcoming traffic problems is a sorry excuse that would do little to address the safety issue.  

    The practice of eliminating the shoulder is “an unfortunate recent experience” that is opposed by law enforcement.  The International Association of Chiefs of Police published the dangers in a recent report:

     

    The reduction or loss of shoulder or emergency parking lanes has led to the elimination of traffic enforcement in many instances. The engineering solution to eliminate the emergency lane poses a significantly higher risk to officers’ safety, compromises their ability to conduct proper investigations and appropriate enforcement activities, delays their arrival, as well as that of other first responders, at incidents requiring their presence, and increases the risk of secondary crashes.

    I don’t know about you, but if I’m on I-95 and I’ve been in an accident, I want the ambulance to be able to get to me.  And if the police pull someone over on 495, I want them to move safely to the shoulder.  Keith Fimian is not making friends with any first responders by taking this position.

    • libra

      highways are as safe as BP-drilled wells.

    • TomPaine

      BP drilled oil wells probably are slightly safer than shoulder-less highways.

    • AnonymousIsAWoman

      Keith Fimian has time and again proved that he lacks both seriousness and knowledge about issues that affect the lives of voters in his district.

      He is proving that his primary interest is not in representing the 11th CD but in pushing a hard right, theocratic social agenda.  In the past, a sizeable chunk of his funding came from Tom Monaghan, former owner of Domino’s Pizza and founder of Ave Maria University and Ave Maria township in Naples, Florida, and other supporters of Ave Maria, a nearly cult-like organization.

      Although Fimian worked hard in 2008 to hide his extremism, when asked about the pragmatic issues that actually affect the lives of constituents of the 11th CD, Fimian either did not know the issue or did not present pragmatic solutions to problems.

      His glib and dangerous response to the serious matter of traffic congestion in Northern Virginia is the latest example of this.

      While Gerry Connolly has brought funding to major transportation projects and lead the way in encouraging livable, walkable settlement patterns near metro stops, Keith Fimian favors eliminating shoulders from congested highways, a solution that would cause far more problems than it would solve.

      What a contrast between two candidates, one ready to lead and to represent his district and the other terminally clueless about good government, civic responsibility, and basics of policy.