Road fatalities continue to mount in the District, despite city officials’ pledge to end them by 2024 through the Vision Zero initiative. Two D.C. residents died in the past few days due to traffic collisions east of the Anacostia River. The city has seen over 20 traffic deaths in 2019.
On Monday, 72-year-old Northwest resident James Whitehead died, succumbing to injuries he sustained in an October 30 crash, according to police. Around 11 a.m. that day, Whitehead lost control of a 2015 Chevrolet Spark he was driving while speeding through the intersection of 37th Street SE and Ridge Road SE. The vehicle struck a light pole as well as a metal fence before landing on the sidewalk, and Whitehead was transported to a hospital for surgery. He had earlier hit a parked car on the 300 block of 37th Street SE when leaving a parking space.
In addition, 28-year-old Southeast resident Dauntay Demetrice Carroll died last Friday in a crash that took place in the 2800 block of South Capitol Street, police say. Carroll was the passenger in a 2003 Mercedes Benz ML 500 whose driver lost control of the vehicle while “traveling at a high rate of speed” around 12:30 a.m. that day. “[T]he vehicle struck a brick security wall outside of Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling,” notes a release. “The impact caused the passenger of the vehicle to be partially ejected from the vehicle.” Carroll was taken to a hospital. where he was pronounced dead. The driver sustained non-life-threatening injuries.
On October 24, D.C. lawmakers held a public hearing on a series of Vision Zero-related bills meant to improve street safety by reducing speed limits and changing the requirements for street redesigns. Amoni Richardson, a 15-year-old Southeast resident, was struck and killed by a 17-year-old driver in a hit-and-run in the 3900 block of East Capitol Street the same day.