BETHESDA, Md. — A Virginia driver who struck two women in a Wisconsin Avenue crosswalk Friday evening is now facing at least five charges including reckless driving, according to Montgomery County Maryland police.
The accident happened at the intersection of Wisconsin Avenue at Middleton Lane. Cell phone distraction is suspected as a factor in the accident, investigators noted in their report.
The identities of the women and their medical conditions have not been made public. They are a 55-year-old woman from Rockville and a 23-year-old woman from Pennsylvania, according to police reports.
The situation is exacerbated by the construction of a new Marriott corporate headquarters building that has resulted in a closed sidewalk that diverts even more pedestrians across the intersection, according to Amanda Farber of the East Bethesda Citizens Association.
The association has been complaining and warning of dangerous conditions in the notoriously congested stretch of downtown Bethesda since 2017.
In August 2017, Maryland's State Highway Administration concluded that additional traffic lights in the area to protect pedestrians are "not justified" based on a review of the prevailing volume of traffic and walkers, according to a letter from David Murnan, the team Leader for traffic in Montgomery County sent to the association.
After even more complaints, the SHA announced in May of this year that it will install pedestrian activated "Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons" and additional warning signs.
Construction had not yet been scheduled at the time of that announcement.