BOSTON — “Find another street!” That’s what the residents of Woodlawn Street in Jamaica Plain are asking a Boston driving school. They told 25 Investigates instructors from the Paloma driving school that they used their small dead end road as a training ground for the students. Parallel parking, 3-point turns and traffic jams are commonplace, residents say.
On Friday, the driving school owner “unexpectedly lost control of the accelerator pedal” according to a Boston police report. He pulled out a fire hydrant, part of a garage, a bush, and a fence at Kerry Spindler’s house, which is located where the Woodlawn cul-de-sac ends with Forest Hills Cemetery.
“That was the icing on the cake,” Spindler told investigative reporter Ted Daniel as he surveyed the damage. “They’ve been using our street for years as a sort of ground zero for student training. The extra traffic, the extra rotations, the extra use of parking spaces has been a real challenge,” she said.
Other Woodlawn residents emailed 25 Investigates after the crash.
“Fortunately, the accident the instructor had on Woodlawn Street did not seriously injure or kill anyone. It did, however, open up a conversation down our street about how we’ve all been feeling for years. writes Anthony Chandler. Christy Zarlengo wrote, “We’ve been trying to fix this for years and have had no luck.”
25 Investigators found 3 pages of complaints filed with the Boston Citizen Reporting website 311. Top-listed Paloma vehicles occupying residential street parking spots. 25 Investigators contacted the office of Boston Mayor Michelle Wu and asked if the city was aware of the issue. His office did not respond to 2 emails.
The Paloma Driving School is located at the bottom of Woodlawn Street on Hyde Park Avenue. An employee put us in touch with the owner by phone. A man who identified himself as Mores Derisier said he was unaware of the concerns but said he would no longer use Woodlawn Street for driver training.
We contacted Kerry Spindler to let her know what the owner of the driving school had told us. In an email, she wrote, “It would be amazing if this story could effect the change we’ve been calling for for years.”
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