BANGOR, Maine - City councilors gave a tentative green light Tuesday to a revised proposal to protect students at John Bapst Memorial High School from traffic on Broadway.
During a meeting of the council’ s transportation and infrastructure committee, councilors directed the city’ s legal staff to draft an agreement allowing the high school to install, at its own expense, a series of bollards within the public right of way in front of the school.
Specifically, the bollards — short vertical posts used to control or direct traffic — would be installed on the sidewalk that runs in front of the school.
Though the agreement is subject to approval from the full council, with six of the city’ s eight councilors on hand for Tuesday’ s meeting, passage seems all but assured.
The move comes eight months after a drunken driver sideswiped a bus and struck several other vehicles in front of the school. No students were injured.
School officials initially proposed placing a row of heavy concrete planters between students and traffic but several councilors worried students would use them as benches or jump over them and into the path of oncoming vehicles.
After meeting with engineers, John Bapst officials determined that the bollards would be a more effective solution.
The incident that prompted school officials to beef up safety around the school occurred last November, about a half-hour before school let out for the day.
Iver D. Cardwell Jr., 26, reportedly had been driving erratically on Broadway before his SUV crashed into the side of a school bus parked in front of the school.
After striking the bus, Cardwell tried to drive away and backed into a Dodge Dakota pickup truck and a Pontiac Grand Am. He wedged his SUV between the bus and a truck in the process.
Bystanders pulled the bleeding man from the driver’s seat as he repeatedly attempted to move the SUV.
Cardwell was the only one injured in the crash, which knocked two school bus monitors off their seats.