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Pedestrian injured in Route 1 vehicle collision in Laurel Wednesday

Howard County police reported a pedestrian was seriously injured after being hit by a vehicle early Wednesday on Route 1 near Madison Avenue, an area that has been targeted for increased safety measures by the county.

Police believe preliminarily that the pedestrian was not in a crosswalk as he attempted to cross Route 1, and was wearing dark clothes.

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The pedestrian was transported to University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center and is listed in serious but stable condition, according to police.

The driver was not injured and police said there has been no indication of driver fault in the collision.

It is too early in the investigation to confirm the speed of the vehicle, but police do not believe the driver was speeding or that speed was a factor in the collision, according to police spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn.

Howard County’s portion of Route 1 is known for posing a threat to pedestrians, bikers and drivers. In 2016, six people were killed in five separate incidents on or near the road in the county, according to data compiled by the Office of Transportation’s Bike and Pedestrian Coordinator Chris Eatough.

Almost all of Route 1 in Howard County — nearly six miles of it— has no pedestrian sidewalks. More than 32,000 trucks and vehicles daily drive through the 11-mile strip that runs through the county.

In the first two quarters of 2017, Howard police investigated 51 injury crashes along Route 1, according to state data. Two of those crashes involved pedestrians.

The county’s Office of Transportation is in the midst of working to increase safety along the busy route. The office will evaluate where along the road the highest number of accidents occur, to pinpoint areas that need the greatest safety improvement.

The evaluation will continue for the rest of this year, with the goal of creating a shortlist of recommendations for improvements to Route 1 in spring 2018, according to Eatough.

Recommendations could include filling gaps in the sidewalk network, reducing speed limits, improving lighting or increasing police enforcement in the area.

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