Summit County high school student struck while walking across Highway 9 in Frisco
February 9, 2017
A Snowy Peaks High School student was struck while walking on Highway 9 near the 10 Mile Drive intersection Tuesday morning. A Frisco police officer responded to the accident. The student was treated and released from the hospital the same day.
Julie McCluskie, the school district spokeswoman, said that the family would prefer to remain unidentified at this time.
"During this time of year, when road conditions are hazardous and there are lots of drivers on the road, we would like to encourage drivers to pay extra attention to pedestrians in the before and after school hours," she said.
She added that the weather can contribute to visibility issues for students walking around town. Snow cover can also make it difficult for pedestrians to find where the sidewalk is.
Tom Wickman, the chief of police in Frisco, said that the town does not see many accidents in that intersection on Highway 9. He added that in this type of weather it is better for drivers to take things slow, and for pedestrians to make sure they have the walk signal. In good weather and bad, he said it can help both pedestrians and drivers stay safe.
"We want to make sure everybody drives appropriately," he said
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Thad Noll, the assistant manager for Summit County, said that Summit Boulevard is the one section of Highway 9 that has sidewalk access on both sides.
He added that since Highway 9 is owned by the Colorado Department of Transportation, there is not much that the county can do to improve safety conditions in the area.
"We do not have the authority, or the funding, to do anything on the highway," he said.
The department decides the speed on the highway as well as the traffic signs in the area. What the county can do is communicate with CDOT and the Colorado State Patrol on particular traffic issues. Both organizations meet with county commissioners on a quarterly basis. Noll added that CDOT investigates traffic incidents to determine if the fault was a road issue, or an error from the driver or pedestrian. Most of the time the department finds that it's a combination.
"It's rarely a speed by itself," Noll said.
After an investigation, CDOT then determines if changes need to be made.
Noll said that the only time the county can make changes is when the incident involves an entity Summit owns. His example was that the Summit Stage bus stop from Breckenridge to Frisco by Summit High School used to be across the highway. Students would have to cross the highway in order to catch their bus. After a couple of accidents the county worked with the school district and moved the stops for buses going in both directions on Highway 9 onto the school's property.
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