Pedestrian Killed in Traffic Accident

fatal accident Iceland

A pedestrian was killed in a traffic collision in Höfðabakki on the east side of Reykjavík on Friday evening, Vísir reports. The cause of the accident is currently being investigated.

See Also: Fatality in Bus and Scooter Collision

The collision was reported around 12:30 AM on Saturday morning and occurred not far from the Ábæjarsafn open air museum.

The victim was a man in his forties. He was transported to the hospital after being hit by the car but died later that morning.

Fatality in Bus and Scooter Collision

fatal accident Iceland

A man on an electric scooter died this weekend after colliding with a bus, RÚV reports. The victim, who was a foreign national living in Iceland, was in his twenties.

This is the second fatal accident involving an electric scooter in Iceland. The first occurred almost a year ago exactly, in November of 2021, when a man in his 50s collided with a motorcycle.

According to police spokesperson Guðmundur Páll Jónsson, the man seems to have driven his scooter into the side of a group coach about the size of a bus, when it was travelling at low speed. The collision took place at the corner of Barónstígur and Grettisgata around 9:00 pm on Saturday night. Police are still investigating the circumstances of the accident.

The The Red Cross offered trauma support and counseling to seventeen of the passengers, as well as three more witnesses on Sunday. Sunday also happened to be a day of memorial for victims of traffic accidents. Eight people have died in traffic-related accidents in Iceland in 2022.

This article has been updated.

Fossvogur Bridge to Be Completed in 2024

Fossvogur bridge Borgarlína

The winning design of a new bridge that will connect Reykjavík and Kópavogur municipalities across the Fossvogur inlet has been revealed, RÚV reports. The bridge will be completed in 2024 and will not be open to private vehicles, rather will be exclusively dedicated to public transport vehicles, cyclists, and pedestrians. The winning design was completed by Icelandic company Efla Consulting Engineers in collaboration with UK-based BEAM Architects.

“The winning proposal provides for a bridge with a rapid cycling lane, for those who want to cross quickly, there are lanes for public transport and the Borgarlína rapid bus transit line in the middle, and on the other side there is a path for those who want to walk or cycle more slowly,” explained Bryndís Friðriksdóttir, regional manager of capital area projects at the Icelandic Road and Coastal Administration.

The bridge, named Alda (e. Wave) is part of an ambitious 15-year transport plan for the Reykjavík capital area that includes the development of a rapid bus transit line, called Borgarlína. Alda is the first major construction project associated with the new transit system. “It’s part of what we call the first phase of Borgarlína, which is the Borgarlína route that runs from Hamraborg to the city centre and connects Reykjavík University, the University of Iceland, and the National Hospital, and then onward from the city centre along Suðurlandsbraut up to Ártúnshöfði so it’s a big part of getting Borgarlína and the new bus system up and running,” Bryndís stated.

The full cost of the bridge is yet to be determined, but Bryndís says the next step will be to examine costs it in detail. It will be funded by the transport agreement between the state and capital area municipalities. The Borgarlína website shows a video simulation of the completed bridge. Read more about the Borgarlína project.

Capital Sees Dramatic Increase in Cyclists and Pedestrians

More and more people are choosing eco-friendly modes of transportation in the capital area, RÚV reports. Fifty counters at various points around Reykjavík and the environs show that the number of pedestrians and cyclists has steadily increased over recent years.

On average, the data collected shows that just under 23,000 people have been commuting on foot and bike every day.

Unsurprisingly, weather plays a central role in people’s transportation choices: 10,000 more people were counted walking or cycling in January 2021 than the previous January, but January 2020 was also a considerably worse year, weather-wise. But while there may be an obvious uptick in cyclists and pedestrians in the spring and summer, the number of people opting to travel by bike and foot is still considerably more year-round than it has been in years past.

Number-crunchers can find more precise data from each of the city’s counters on the website Borgarvefsjá, here.

 

New Countdown Timer for Downtown Pedestrians

A new countdown timer and pedestrian light has been installed at the intersection of Bankastræti and Lækjargata in downtown Reykjavík, Vísir reports.

Where previously the intersection had a standard crosswalk indicator, the new light features “the red man and the green man.” Pedestrians are permitted to cross when the green man appears along with a countdown light that shows them how long they have to cross the street. The red man is accompanied by a countdown timer showing how much time there is until it will be safe to cross.

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Buses stopping at the intersection are given priority and so the length of time that pedestrians have to cross the street there varies. When the computer-operated system is in the process of determining how long the wait will be, the red man is accompanied by a plus sign and a number that indicates how long it will be before the countdown to crossing will begin.

The new crosswalk light was installed in order to increase pedestrian safety at the busy downtown intersection.

City to Introduce ‘Computer-Aided Crosswalks’ For Pedestrian Safety

New technology aimed at making pedestrians more visible to oncoming traffic when crossing the street will be put into operation in five places around Reykjavík this fall. RÚV reports that the pilot project was introduced by the Independence Party and unanimously approved at a City Council meeting on Tuesday afternoon.

The technology in question involves a sensor that detects pedestrians approaching a crosswalk. When this happens, LED lights illuminate the crossing and draw attention to the person walking. Warning lights on the way to the crossing will also illuminate.

Ólafus Kr. Guðmundsson, a substitute city councilman for the Independence Party, told Vísir that these “computer-aided crosswalks” will play an important role in preventing serious accidents in the future, recalling, for instance, an incident that took place on Hringbraut in January when a young person was hit by a car while walking to school.

Each new crossing system will cost ISK 2 million [$16,379: €14,621]. The specific intersections that will be selected for the pilot have yet to be chosen.