Residents Call for Change to Rockville Intersection After Man in Wheelchair Struck, Killed

An intersection in Montgomery County may need further improvements after two crashes happened at the intersection in the past four days, including one that killed a man in a wheelchair trying to cross the road.

A 57-year-old man using a wheelchair was struck by a Toyota Scion while using a crosswalk in the 600 block of East Gude Drive in Rockville, Maryland, about 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, police said.

He died a few hours later.

His name was not made public, but Susie Sinclair-Smith with the Montgomery County Coalitition for the Homeless said the man was headed to its shelter nearby.

"One client who has been with us, coming in and out of the shelter since 2009, was a double amputee, had throat cancer, was in a wheelchair. He was the bravest person I've ever met in my life," Sinclair Smith said.

Two cars were involved in a crash at the same intersection on Wednesday morning and while there was serious damage to the cars, no one was hurt.

The current crosswalk signal was created to improve the intersection and blinks yellow. It turns red when the crosswalk sign is pushed and allows pedestrians 11 seconds to cross the six-lane road.

"You can never quite make it across the street with the timing of the go and everything. Plus, the cars don't always make it stop," said David Stone, who knew the man who was struck and killed. 

He said the man used a manual wheelchair and often struggled to cross the road in time.

The man was also struck in the westbound lanes of East Gude Drive, where the road curves ahead of the signal.

The Montgomery County Police Department said it is investigating the crash and will try to determine what the traffic signal indicated when the man was crossing.

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