South Boston residents calling for safer streets after toddler killed by car

BOSTON (WHDH) - South Boston residents gathered Thursday to urge city leaders to make the streets safer following the tragic death of 3-year-old Colin McGrath, who was hit and killed by a motor vehicle while being pushed in a stroller on a sidewalk.

Residents said they want people to slow down and pay more attention while driving through South Boston.

“We’re out here because our streets are unsafe and we want to slow down some of these commuters that are flying as we speak, and we need to be heard today,” said resident Katie Donovan. “I want them to protect us from getting hit by cars.”

Donovan and her son were walking home from a Little League baseball game earlier this year when they were hit by a car at Farragut Road and East Broadway.

“I have a broken tibia plateau, my elbow was smashed, (and) I was in the hospital for two weeks,” she said.

She and a room full of families brought their concerns before 13 public officials, asking them to make Southie safer.

Deirdre McDermott lost her father, Billy, five years ago in a crash on Day Boulevard. She says the streets are no safer now.

“It is traumatizing to me to see on social media pedestrians being struck in South Boston over and over again,” she said. “I’m here to tell you I’m not going away, and now I’m angry.”

City and state leaders are responding with a safety plan they say will help. The plan includes speed bumps, raised crosswalks, and four-way stops.

“We’re talking about a death of a child here, God bless, so those are measures that we’ll take here or any other section of the city,” Boston Police Commissioner William G. Gross said. “Mayor Walsh is committed to doing that. Boston police will back that up.”

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