Tag: safety

“Safe On PCH” Weeklong Safe Driving Event

April 11, 2024 ·

Pacific Coast Highway. Photo courtesy of Josh Duke via Unsplash.

MALIBU—The city of Malibu posted on its website that Lindsey P. Horvath, Chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, is partnering with California Highway Patrol (CHP), the City of Malibu, Malibu High School, PTSA Malibu, Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD), and the Malibu-Lost Hills Station to host “Safe on PCH.”

The weeklong program focuses on safe driving, and will engage students and families to keep roads in Malibu safe for the community.

Pacific Coast Highway impacts the lives of every person in the Malibu region. On Monday, April 29, the lunchtime fair will transpire at 12 p.m. with resources and information from the LASD, CHP, Supervisor Horvath’s Office, and Malibu.

On Tuesday, April 30 at 9 a.m. there will be a Sheriff Impact Presentation, where the Sheriff’s Department will host the IMPACT Teen Drivers’ parent program called Under Your Influence (UYI), which educates parents and teens with evidence-based strategies to help keep teens, their families, and everyone they share the road with safe. The special presentation is for parents and will happen from 9 to 10:30 am at Malibu High School’s Parent Center.

On Wednesday, May 1, there will be a screening of the film, “21 Miles Film” at 6:30 p.m. at Malibu High School. The movie is directed by Michel Shane. There will be a discussion after the movie with a panel moderated by Chair Horvath to inform and educate students and parents about the dangers on PCH and offer tips to make driving on PCH safer for teenagers. Panelists include Captain Jenn Seetoo, Captain Dennis Ford, Robert D. Cohen, Bridget Thompson, and Shane. It will take place in the Malibu auditorium with an expected attendance of over 200 people. This event requires a separate RSVP.

On Thursday, May 2, two school assemblies will transpire coordinated by Malibu High School and CHP. One targeting 6-8th graders (30 minutes) and one for 9th –12th graders (45 minutes). The assembly will include Impact Teen Drivers’ high school program called “What Do You Consider Lethal” (WDYCL) which engages, educates, and empowers students with evidence-based strategies that help them prevent car crashes, particularly those caused by reckless and distracted driving.

On the final day of the week-long event, on Friday, May 3, the Malibu High School will be holding student classroom breakout sessions focused on the causes and effects of distracted driving. There will be a classroom presentation followed by a group activity.

For more details visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/safe-on-pch-week-tickets-859158926477?aff=oddtdtcreator. No RSVP is required for the general week, only select events.

By Trevor

BHPD Looking For Distracted Drivers In April

April 3, 2024 ·

Using a cellphone while driving is against the law in the state of California. Photo courtesy of Jonas Lee via Unsplash.

BEVERLY HILLS—On Monday, April 2, the Beverly Hills Police Department announced in a news release that April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

The BHPD will be actively looking for drivers throughout the month who are in violation of the state’s hands-free cell phone law.

“In today’s fast-paced life, it is common to lose focus while driving,” Chief Mark G. Stainbrook said. “Distracted Driving Awareness Month is a crucial reminder that even a moment of inattention or a quick glance at the phone can lead to serious consequences. Let’s get off our apps and keep our eyes on the road. Before starting the car, silence your phone or put it in the glove box, trunk or back seat. Anywhere you can’t reach.”

The BHPD reported that according to the 2023 California Statewide Public Opinion Survey, more than 74 percent of drivers surveyed said that distracted driving because of texting was their biggest safety concern. In 2021, there were at least 140 people killed in distracted driving traffic crashes in the state. The numbers could be underreported because law enforcement officers may not always be able to tell that distraction was a factor in a crash.

Under current law, drivers are not allowed to hold a phone or electronic communications device while operating a vehicle, even when stopped at a red light. This includes talking, texting or using an app. Using a handheld cell phone while driving is punishable by a fine, and violating the hands-free law for a second time within 36 months of a prior conviction for the same offense will result in a point being added to a driver’s record.

Motorists are asked to pull over to a safe parking spot if they have to take a call, text or email. The BH Police Department noted other distractions can be eating, grooming, reaching for something that fell on the floor, putting on or taking off clothing, talking with passengers, or children in the back seat.

By Trevor

Ordinance Approved To Ensure Safety Of Exterior Elevated Elements On Buildings

February 29, 2024 ·

Photo courtesy of Felipe Dornellas via Unsplash.

MALIBU—On February 20, it was announced on its website that the Malibu City Council approved an ordinance to regulate inspections of balconies and other exterior elevated elements on any buildings with three or more units to help protect the public.

“Safety is our No. 1 priority, and no one should have to be afraid because a balcony they are standing on may collapse,” said Mayor Steve Uhring. “This is a common-sense regulation that will protect homeowners from the hidden danger of exterior elements that could collapse, and from liability.”

Exterior elevated elements (E3s) are balconies, decks, porches, stairways, walkways and entry structures that extend beyond exterior walls of a building.

The ordinance was proposed by the Malibu City Council in response to enacted California state laws monitoring exterior elements. The state laws were enacted in response to a 2015 balcony collapse in Berkeley that killed 6 students and injured 7. A subsequent investigation revealed that years of exposure to moisture led to dry rot along the top of the cantilevered balcony framing, causing it to disintegrate and compromise the load-carrying capacity of the supporting elements.

The State of California moved to address deficiencies in the laws around the maintenance and inspection of balconies, decks, and other exterior elevated elements. The primary differences between the Senate Bill (SB) 721 and SB 326 are who they affect and the frequency of inspection. These inspections will identify deterioration issues and determine if repairs are needed.

SB 721 applies to property owners of buildings with three or more dwelling units. The first inspection is required by January 1, 2025 and then every 6 years after.

SB 326 applies to condominium associations. The first inspection is required by January 1, 2025 and then every 9 years after.

All inspections must be completed by a California state-licensed architect, civil engineer, or structural engineer.

The ordinance must be approved by the City Council during a second reading before final adoption. The Environmental Sustainability Department has already developed educational materials including inspection protocols aligning with the new regulations, which can be found on the website or in person at city hall. The program provides concise standards for inspections of these structures and will assist property owners to make necessary repairs or upgrades to ensure their safety.

Malibu will host several town hall meetings in the spring to offer information and assistance to property owners. Further details will be announced.

For more information, including the types of properties that the ordinance applies to, visit: www.malibucity.org/E3.

By Trevor

Construction Begins On N. San Vicente Boulevard And Rosewood Avenue

February 8, 2024 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—On Wednesday, February 7, the city of West Hollywood announced on its website that construction has started for pedestrian safety improvements on N. San Vicente Boulevard and Rosewood Avenue.

The project includes new curb ramps, pedestrian/bicycle refuge islands, re-grading and re-paving of existing asphalt pavement, striping and signage improvements, EV charging station relocation, and pedestrian/bicycle crosswalks with a pedestrian hybrid beacon that is activated by pedestrians and/or bicyclists. Construction activities started in February 2024 and are expected to be completed by July 2024, weather permitting.

The city of West Hollywood indicated in a press release the crosswalk improvement effort is part of a commitment to explore a mix of measures to address safety. The constant movement of dense vehicular traffic and pedestrians in close proximity is a challenge not only in West Hollywood but in cities across the country. The enhanced crosswalks join a variety of improvements as part of a comprehensive plan with three unique areas to improve pedestrian safety: Engineering, Enforcement, and Education. Read about other pedestrian safety updates in the City here.

For additional details about West Hollywood’s engineering efforts to improve safety, contact the Department of Public Works at (323) 848-6375. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing call TTY (323) 848-6496.

By Trevor

Evacuation Order Issued By LASD

February 5, 2024 ·

TOPANGA CANYON/MALIBU—The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department posted on its Facebook page that an Evacuation Order was issued for Santa Maria Road from Topanga Canyon, Malibu as a result of high risk of mud and debris. The order is in effect from 6 p.m. February 3 through Tuesday, February 6 at 6 p.m.

Staying in the area could cause a risk to personal safety and have limited ability for medical or rescue personnel to get to them. The American Red Cross established an evacuation center for people impacted at ONE Generation, 18255 Victory Boulevard in Reseda, CA 91335. The center can be contacted at (800) 675-5799.

The Agoura Animal Care Center has been established as the location for affected ANIMALS. Their address is 29525 Agoura Road, Agoura, CA 91301.

Individuals living in the Evacuation Order Area must evacuate immediately to ensure their safety and that of their loved ones.

“Remember to gather medications, pets and important documents, and leave immediately. Stay informed of local news, register for emergency alerts at @readylacounty and @nwslosangeles or visit Emergency – COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES (lacounty.gov),” reads a statement from the LASD Facebook page.

By Trevor

Contract Approved By Malibu To Bring Back CHP Patrols

January 29, 2024 ·

MALIBU—On Thursday, January 25, 2024, the city of Malibu announced on its website they approved a long-term contract with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) to establish a dedicated three-officer traffic enforcement taskforce to patrol Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) within City Limits.

According to the city’s website, on January 22, 2024, the Malibu City Council approved the contract for the term of two years, with a financial commitment not to exceed $2 million.
“Active, visible traffic enforcement is one of the most immediate ways to make PCH safer, and will send a message that speeding and reckless driving will not be tolerated in Malibu. Despite PCH being under Caltrans jurisdiction, the City remains committed to doing everything possible within its jurisdictional ability to make PCH safer,” the city stated on its website.

The Malibu City Council declared a local state of emergency on November 13, 2023, in response to the increasing dangerous conditions on PCH, culminating in the deaths of four Pepperdine students struck by a speeding motorist while walking along PCH in October 2023.

The city of Malibu is focused on improving safety on its 21 miles of PCH, which has been a top priority for the community. The city of Malibu does not control PCH, since its incorporation, but has worked closely with Caltrans, the LA County Sheriff’s Department and other partner agencies to find ways to make PCH safer for residents, motorists, pedestrians and cyclists.

According to the City Council Agenda Report, the CHP stopped patrolling Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) in Malibu in 1991 when the city was incorporated, and the city contracted for law enforcement in Malibu with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD). In 2020, Malibu secured a contract with CHP for On-Call Services for special events, but for the past two years, CHP has been unable to fulfill any requests for assistance.

According to a CHP press report, they have about 1,000 vacant officer positions across the state. CHP attributes the staffing issues to a variety of factors, including increasing retirement rates, job preferences in the private sector, and societal influence; similar issues are facing LASD.

By Trevor

LAFD Highlight New Tools 30 Years After Northridge Earthquake

January 24, 2024 ·

SHERMAN OAKS—January 17, 2024, marked 30 years since the 6.7 magnitude earthquake that occurred in Northridge that left 57 people dead and caused major damage to buildings, businesses and freeways in the San Fernando Valley region.

The Los Angeles Fire Department posted on its Facebook Page that firefighters and media gathered at Fire Station 88 in Sherman Oaks on January 17, 2024 to remember the Northridge Earthquake, demonstrate the new tools and techniques the LAFD are using 30 years after (at “Disaster City” Urban Search and Rescue training area behind the fire station), and update residents to increase their preparedness before the next “Big One.”

At 4:31 a.m., on January 17, 1994, Los Angeles suffered a 6.7 Magnitude earthquake, centered in Northridge. The quake caused significant damage and losses were seen throughout Southern California, with fallen bridges, fires, flooding, buildings collapsed, and highways and more.

“First Responders worked to dig the city out of the rubble, but it wasn’t just us…. Residents, neighbors, and businesses all came together to show the resilience of Los Angeles,” said the LAFD.

The Fire Department is aiming to ensure Los Angelenos are prepared for the next big earthquake when it happens. Individuals are being asked to be proactive as it unknown when the next big earthquake may strike.

People are expected to know the risks and create a plan for their family or household which includes an emergency kit and to learn how to stay informed during an emergency situation.

“Your #LAFD also has programs and resources to help, and offers free classes to join our Community Emergency Response Team (#CERT) to help our communities prepare for and respond to the next crisis. Visit LAFD.org for more information,” the LAFD stated in the post.

By Trevor

Pedestrian And Bicycle Safety Operation January 4

January 4, 2024 ·

SANTA MONICA—The Santa Monica Police Department is conducting a Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation with focused enforcement efforts on primary collision factors involving motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists.

The Police Department identifies locations where pedestrian and bike collisions are prevalent, along with the violations that led to those collisions. Traffic officers will be on duty patrolling areas where bike and pedestrian traffic and collisions occur in an effort to reduce deaths and injuries.

Officers will be looking for violations committed by drivers, bike riders and pedestrians alike that can lead to life changing injuries. Violations include speeding, making illegal turns, failing to yield or provide right of way to bicyclists or pedestrians, or failing to stop for signs and signals.

The extra enforcement efforts will take place on Thursday, January 4 between the hours of 6 a.m. and 9 p.m.

“We all have places to be and not everyone gets there by car. Bicyclists and pedestrians have the same rights to the road but face even more risk without the protections vehicles have. We should all be looking out for one another,” the SMPD stated.

Pedestrians· Be predictable. Use crosswalks, when available.· Take notice of approaching vehicles and practice due care.· Do not walk or run into the path of a vehicle. At 30 mph, a driver needs at least 90 feet to stop.· Be visible. Make it easy for drivers to see you – wear light colors, reflective material and carry a flashlight, particularly at dawn, dusk or at night.· Be extra careful crossing streets or entering crosswalks at night when it is harder to see, or when crossing busier streets with more lanes and higher speed limits. Drivers· Follow the speed limit and slow down at intersections. Be prepared to stop for pedestrians at marked and unmarked crosswalks.· Avoid blocking crosswalks while waiting to make a right-hand turn.· Never drive impaired.

Bicyclists· Obey traffic laws, use hand signals, use lights at night (front white light and rear red reflector), and wear a helmet.· Bicyclists must travel in the same direction of traffic and have the same requirements as any slow-moving vehicle.· Avoid the door zone: do not ride too closely to parked cars.· If there’s a bike lane, use it, unless making a left turn, passing, or approaching a place where a right turn is allowed.· Yield to pedestrians. Bicyclists must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians within marked crosswalks or within unmarked crosswalks at intersections.

Funding for the program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Photo by Gunnar Madlung.

By Trevor

New Website Launches With Focus For Safety On Pacific Coast Highway

December 16, 2023 ·

MALIBU—The city of Malibu announced on Thursday, December 14 of the launch of a new website aimed to keeping the community informed about ongoing efforts to improve safety conditions on Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) within Malibu city limits.

The website, www.MalibuCity.org/PCHSafety, is intended to serve as a central hub for updates, resources, and key information related to PCH safety projects, and milestones. This initiative represents a significant step forward in the City’s commitment to transparency, education, and community engagement on all things PCH.

“Our goal is to create an environment where safety is a shared responsibility. This webpage serves as a vital tool for keeping our community and stakeholders informed about the ongoing efforts to enhance public safety on PCH in Malibu,” said City Manager Steve McClary. “We believe that an informed community is a safer community.”

The newly created website is designed to be a one-stop destination for residents, businesses, and visitors seeking the latest information on PCH Safety efforts. Key features include, but are not limited to, the following:

-City Updates: Stay informed about any recent actions taken by the City of Malibu to address safety concerns on PCH.

-Events and Meetings: Find information on recent or upcoming events, meetings and opportunities for community involvement and collaboration relevant to PCH safety.

-PCH Safety Taskforce Updates: Stay engaged with summaries and outcomes from PCH Taskforce meetings as we actively work to address challenges and implement solutions to improve safety along this vital corridor.

-Updates on efforts by County and State Elected Officials: Stay informed on the latest developments from our local and State legislative partners working towards enhancing safety measures on PCH.

-Enforcement Initiatives: Learn about our efforts led by LA County Sherriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol to improve traffic management, promote safe driving practices and address specific safety concerns.

-Resources: Find valuable resources, including PCH traffic and law enforcement reports and statistics to better understand the current state of PCH safety.

-Fact Sheet: A list of actions the City has taken to improve PCH safety.

Improving the safety of Pacific Coast Highway has been a goal for the community. PCH is a state highway under the jurisdiction of Caltrans, leaving the city of Malibu with limited ability to make changes to the highway. Malibu has taken numerous actions and invested millions of dollars in recent years to improve PCH safety within its ability.

Conditions on PCH have gotten hazardous with excessive speeding, reckless and distracted driving, and intoxicated driving. Since 2010, 58 individuals died on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. During the past 10 years, the city has had more than 4,000 traffic collisions, 1,600 of which involved injuries, and more than 100,000 traffic citations have been issued. On October 17, 2023, four Pepperdine students were killed after being struck by a speeding motorist while walking on PCH.

On November 13, 2023, the Malibu City Council declared a Local Emergency. The proactive measure underscores the urgency and significance of addressing this threat to public safety in our community.

Community members can visit www.MalibuCity.org/PCHSafety regularly to stay informed and engaged in the collective effort to improve safety on Pacific Coast Highway. Any significant updates on the PCH safety effort will be posted on the website, as well as on the city’s social media platforms.

By Trevor

New Website Launches With Focus For Safety On Pacific Coast Highway

December 14, 2023 ·

MALIBU—The city of Malibu announced on Thursday, December 14 of the launch of a new website aimed to keeping the community informed about ongoing efforts to improve safety conditions on Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) within Malibu city limits.

The website, www.MalibuCity.org/PCHSafety, is intended to serve as a central hub for updates, resources, and key information related to PCH safety projects, and milestones. This initiative represents a significant step forward in the City’s commitment to transparency, education, and community engagement on all things PCH.

“Our goal is to create an environment where safety is a shared responsibility. This webpage serves as a vital tool for keeping our community and stakeholders informed about the ongoing efforts to enhance public safety on PCH in Malibu,” said City Manager Steve McClary. “We believe that an informed community is a safer community.”

The newly created website is designed to be a one-stop destination for residents, businesses, and visitors seeking the latest information on PCH Safety efforts. Key features include, but are not limited to, the following:

-City Updates: Stay informed about any recent actions taken by the City of Malibu to address safety concerns on PCH.

-Events and Meetings: Find information on recent or upcoming events, meetings and opportunities for community involvement and collaboration relevant to PCH safety.

-PCH Safety Taskforce Updates: Stay engaged with summaries and outcomes from PCH Taskforce meetings as we actively work to address challenges and implement solutions to improve safety along this vital corridor.

-Updates on efforts by County and State Elected Officials: Stay informed on the latest developments from our local and State legislative partners working towards enhancing safety measures on PCH.

-Enforcement Initiatives: Learn about our efforts led by LA County Sherriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol to improve traffic management, promote safe driving practices and address specific safety concerns.

-Resources: Find valuable resources, including PCH traffic and law enforcement reports and statistics to better understand the current state of PCH safety.

-Fact Sheet: A list of actions the City has taken to improve PCH safety.

Improving the safety of Pacific Coast Highway has been a goal for the community. PCH is a state highway under the jurisdiction of Caltrans, leaving the city of Malibu with limited ability to make changes to the highway. Malibu has taken numerous actions and invested millions of dollars in recent years to improve PCH safety within its ability.

Conditions on PCH have gotten hazardous with excessive speeding, reckless and distracted driving, and intoxicated driving. Since 2010, 58 individuals died on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu. During the past 10 years, the city has had more than 4,000 traffic collisions, 1,600 of which involved injuries, and more than 100,000 traffic citations have been issued. On October 17, 2023, four Pepperdine students were killed after being struck by a speeding motorist while walking on PCH.

On November 13, 2023, the Malibu City Council declared a Local Emergency. The proactive measure underscores the urgency and significance of addressing this threat to public safety in our community.

Community members can visit www.MalibuCity.org/PCHSafety regularly to stay informed and engaged in the collective effort to improve safety on Pacific Coast Highway. Any significant updates on the PCH safety effort will be posted on the website, as well as on the city’s social media platforms.

By Trevor

Traffic Signal Synchronization Project On PCH Starts

December 5, 2023 ·

MALIBU—On November 29, the city of Malibu indicated in a news release that work will start on Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) starting between Topanga Canyon and Big Rock Drive in Malibu the week of December 4 on Malibu’s Traffic Signal Synchronization Project, which is a significant measure to date to improve safety and mobility on PCH.

“Since 2010, 58 individuals have died in accidents on Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, and it is no surprise that improving safety on this iconic highway has been a top priority for our City,” said Mayor Steve Uhring. “Our signal synchronization project is a major step toward our goal of a safer PCH. Once completed it will make PCH safer for our residents, for the 40,000 commuters who pass through Malibu every day and for the 15 million visitors who visit Malibu every summer.”

The goal of the project is to make PCH a safer “Smart Corridor” by installing communication lines between the existing traffic signals on PCH from Topanga Canyon Boulevard to John Tyler Drive to synchronize the signals to existing traffic conditions. It will allow signals to be controlled remotely by the Caltrans Traffic Management Center to lower traffic speeds and decrease congestion.

New equipment will capture real-time traffic data and send it to the traffic signal controllers who will be using state-of-the art software to adjust the traffic signal timing to actual traffic volume. Vehicles going the speed over the speed limit will run into red lights, while those going the speed limit will encounter green lights. The project has new closed circuit TV cameras at each intersection; replace existing signal poles, street improvements and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility upgrades, Adaptive Traffic Control System (ATCS) sensors, and changeable message signs.

The project was approved by the Malibu City Council in 2017 and is a step toward achieving the top priority of Malibu’s PCH Safety Study.

According to CalTrans, PCH at Malibu Canyon Road sees roughly 4,600 cars per hour, or approximately 40,500 vehicles per day during peak hours during the summer months. About 1,215,000 vehicles pass through Malibu on PCH every month during the summer.
In the past 10 years, Malibu had more than 4,000 traffic collisions, 1,600 of which involved injuries and more than 100,000 traffic citations have been issued.

On October 17, 2023, four students from Pepperdine were killed by a speeding motorist while walking along PCH. Excessive speed is a commonly cited violation every year.

Speeding and improper turns are the most common contributing factor to collisions, both ofwhich will be directly addressed by the Traffic Signal Synchronization Project. The system will be used to enhance emergency evacuations and keep traffic moving rapidly and safely.
The $34.6 million project is fully funded through Measure R funds administered by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority and is expected to take about one year to complete.

Work hours will transpire Monday through Friday 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. with alternating lane closures in both directions, mostly on the right-hand lanes. Summer work hours (Memorial Day to Labor Day) will be Monday through Friday 7 a.m. – 4 p.m., with some nighttime work.

Residents can expect noise, lights, vibrations, and dust while work is being complete. Individuals are sked to look for workers and work vehicles in and around the roadway and altered traffic patterns. Under California law, traffic citations are doubled in construction zones. For more details visit www.MalibuCity.org/PCHSignalSynch.

By Trevor

Free Weekend Trolley, The PickUp, Celebrates 10 Years

November 30, 2023 ·

WEST HOLLYWOOD—The city, West Hollywood City Council, and its Public Safety Commission are joining the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station, local Fire Stations 7 and 8, and Block by Block Security Ambassadors to remind the public not to drink and drive as the upcoming holiday season arrives.

The PickUp, a free trolley service launched in 2013 is celebrating 10 years this year and a community reception will be held. The trolley runs along Santa Monica Boulevard on Friday and Saturday nights from 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. and on Sundays from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. and on specific holidays.

The trolley carries people safely to and from bars, clubs, restaurants, and entertainment venues in and around West Hollywood’s Rainbow District, Center City and Eastside areas.

The reception will take place on Monday, December 4, at 5:30 p.m. in the motor court adjacent to West Hollywood’s Council Chambers/Public Meeting Room, located at 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard. It is free and open to the public to attend and will happen before the regular meeting of the West Hollywood City Council, which will start at 6 p.m.

The PickUp provides more than 100,000 passenger trips each year and connects individuals to the places in the city they want to go. The PickUp reduces driving while intoxicated and eases parking and traffic congestion. Details for riding can be viewed at: www.wehopickup.com.

West Hollywood works year-round to raise awareness about safe driving, distractions, and pedestrian safety. The City’s Drive Mindfully campaign reminds community members to encourage safety in the community whether driving, bicycling, or walking. The City’s Imbibe Intelligently campaign promotes safety tips and messages regarding alcohol consumption and encourages responsibility as the city works to maintain safe establishments that are free from overconsumption of alcohol.

As the holiday season approaches, the West Hollywood Station of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has issued the following safety tips:

-Even one drink can impair your judgment and increase the risk of getting arrested for driving drunk — or worse, the risk of having a crash while driving.

-If you will be drinking or using marijuana, do not plan on driving. Plan ahead; designate a sober driver before the party begins – a designated driver is someone who hasn’t had any alcohol or marijuana, not just the person who drank or smoked the least.

-If you have been drinking or using marijuana, do not drive. Call a taxi, phone a sober friend or family member, use a ride share service or public transportation, or call one of your local sober ride home programs.

-Be responsible. If someone you know is impaired, do not let that person get behind the wheel, and do not accept a ride with an impaired person.

-If you see an impaired driver on the road, contact law enforcement. Your actions may save someone’s life, and inaction could cost a life.

The West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station’s Community Impact Team (CIT) actively patrols bars, nightclubs, and hotels. Deputies are proactive in addressing impacts from entertainment establishments and special events. The Sheriff’s Station’s Entertainment Policing Team (EPT) focuses on entertainment and alcohol-related law enforcement issues. Together, the Sheriff’s Station and the City’s Code Compliance Division work with the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) to educate businesses and work collaboratively on alcohol-related issues.

For more details about The PickUp Celebrating 10 Years or about West Hollywood’s transit programs contact Douglas Bear Nguyen, West Hollywood Transportation Program Administrator, at (323) 848-6370 or at dnguyen@weho.org. For people who are Deaf or hard of hearing call TTY (323) 848-6496.

By Trevor

Santa Monica Celebrates Bike And Pedestrian Safety Improvements

November 28, 2023 ·

SANTA MONICA—The city of Santa Monica announced in a press release on Monday, November 27 that on Saturday, December 2, the city will celebrate the completion of the newest addition to its protected bike network with a ribbon cutting event and activities throughout the morning.

The celebration starts at 9 a.m. and will run until 12 p.m. at the 17th St./SMC Metro E Line parking lot at 1610 Colorado Avenue.

According to a news release from the city of Santa Monica, improvements to bike and pedestrian safety have helped the city’s goal of focusing on a Sustainable and Connected Community. The project elevates foundational city initiatives in the community and feedback that came from the adopted Bike Action Plan Amendment, Pedestrian Action Plan, the Michigan Avenue Neighborhood Greenway (MANGo) Plan, and the city’s Land Use and Circulation Element.

“I’m thrilled to see such a robust, thoughtful and important multi-modal project come to completion,” said Mayor Gleam Davis. “By increasing separation from moving traffic and connecting neighborhoods, this project helps make walking and biking easier, encouraging sustainable practices that lead to healthier communities.”

The December 2 event will feature music, performances and workshops, including:

-Santa Monica High School marching band

-LA Jugglers performing with vintage bicycles

-Academia de Danza Ballet Folklorico Flor de Mayo

-Guided bike rides

-Free bike repair and tune ups from Santa Monica College Bike Maintenance Class

-Helmet decorating with Santa Monica Spoke

-Bike basket and accessories workshop with reDiscover Center

-Remarks from Mayor Gleam Davis, Police Chief Ramon Batista, and Department of Transportation Director Anuj Gupta

-Remarks from Cynthia Rose of Santa Monica Spoke

-Free donuts, coffee and hot cocoa

An event schedule is available here.

The Safe Streets for 17th Street and Michigan Avenue advances Santa Monica’s commitment to a Clean and Safe Santa Monica, including the Vision Zero initiative, which has the goal of eliminating severe traffic injuries and deaths on city streets.

Project elements that promote safety include:

-A concrete curb protected bikeway

-Increased lighting to better illuminate sidewalks and bike lanes

-Curb extensions and upgraded accessible curb ramps

-Freshly painted crossings to better define space for bicyclists and pedestrians and increase yielding compliance

-Protected intersections to reduce crossing distances, slow vehicles and turns, and facilitate left turns for bikes and scooters without needing to merge into traffic

-Curb extensions and new curb ramps at 14th and 15th Streets

-Mini traffic circles on 16th and 18th Streets, bringing a calm and predictable flow with landscaping and new trees

-Signal timing adjustments to give pedestrians a head start when crossing the street

Additional projects upcoming and underway within the Sustainable & Connected Community priority include bike and pedestrian improvements on Stewart Street, 20th Street and Wilshire Boulevard.

“I want to thank our community for their patience during construction of these critical upgrades. Projects such as this make our streets safer and more inviting for all users, including pedestrians, cyclists and motorists alike, while fighting climate change by encouraging more people to bike, walk, and connect to transit,” said Anuj Gupta. “I look forward to continuing to advance the City Council’s ambitious agenda and working closely with community members to improve safety and the overall experience of getting around our vibrant city.”

For more details, visit www.santamonica.gov/mobility-projects/safe-streets-for-17th-street-and-michigan-avenue.

By Trevor

BHPD Receives Grant From The Office Of Traffic Safety

November 15, 2023 ·

BEVERLY HILLS—The Beverly Hills Police Department announced on November 8 that they were awarded an $80,000 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS). The grant will support ongoing enforcement and education programs to help decrease the number of serious injuries and deaths on roads.

“This funding will strengthen our commitment to public safety in our community,” said Police Chief Mark G. Stainbrook. “We will be able to increase our efforts in making our roads safer for everyone and focus on critical areas such as distracted driving, impaired driving, and speeding.”

The grant will provide additional programs and resources, including:

-DUI checkpoints and patrols focused on stopping suspected impaired drivers.

-High visibility distracted driving enforcement operations targeting drivers in violation of California’s hands-free cell phone law.

-Enforcement operations focused on the most dangerous driver behaviors that put the safety of people biking or walking at risk.

-Enforcement operations focused on top violations that cause crashes: speeding, failure to yield, stop sign, and/or red-light running, and improper turning or lane changes.

-Officer training and/or recertification: Standard Field Sobriety Test (SFST), Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE), and Drug Recognition Expert (DRE).

The grant program will run through September 2024. Funding for the program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

By Trevor

PCH Taskforce Meeting At City Hall November 14

November 14, 2023 ·

MALIBU—The City will host a Special Public Meeting of the PCH Taskforce on Tuesday, November 14, at 10 a.m. at Malibu City Hall (located at 23825 Stuart Ranch Road) with City, County and State elected officials and Caltrans to discuss ways to address dangerous conditions on Pacific Coast Highway in the region.

State Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin, 42nd District, will chair the meeting, and will be joined by State Senator Ben Allen, 24th District, Malibu Mayor Steve Uhring, LA County Supervisor, 3rd District, Lindsey Horvath, Malibu City Manager Steve McClary, Malibu-Lost Hills Sheriff’s Station Commanding Officer Captain Jennifer Seetoo, Rafael Molina, Deputy District Director, Division of Traffic Operations, Caltrans District 7 and Lee Haber, Chief Safety Officer, Division of Traffic Operations, Caltrans District 7.

Members of the public can attend, watch, and give public comment in person at Malibu City Hall or via the Zoom meeting. Join the Zoom meeting.

The meeting agenda is available online.

The fact sheet on the City of Malibu’s efforts to improve safety on PCH is available to review online.

The City of Malibu reported on its website that the PCH Taskforce is a coalition of law enforcement, traffic engineers, Caltrans, and local and state elected officials working for solutions to make PCH safer for all users, from the McClure Tunnel in Santa Monica to the Ventura County line. The taskforce serves to update residents on ongoing projects related to the highway. It is chaired by Assemblymember Irwin and Senator Allen.

On October 19, the city noted on its website they are working to improve the safety on PCH after 4 students at Pepperdine University were killed after a crash. There are 21 miles of PCH in Malibu.

“The City was shocked and saddened by the loss of the four Pepperdine University students on October 17. Our hearts are with all of those who have been impacted by this tragedy. While the City does not control PCH, since its incorporation, Malibu has worked closely with Caltrans, the LA County Sheriff’s Department and our other partner agencies to find ways to make PCH safer for residents, motorists, pedestrians and cyclists. We will continue to push for resources to achieve a higher level of safety for our community,” said the City of Malibu in a statement.

The city is focused on enhancing safety on PCH, and will continue to do so with the following projects and programs:

CITY-FUNDED TRAFFIC SAFETY IMPROVEMENTS ON PCH

To date, Malibu has allocated and spent approximately $39 million dollars on traffic safety improvement projects on PCH, including:

-PCH Bike Route along Zuma Beach

-PCH and Kanan Dume Arrestor Bed – The project was built to stop runaway vehicles from crashing into PCH

-La Costa pedestrian crosswalk signal

-PCH and Big Rock traffic signal improvements

-PCH traffic signal synchronization project

-PCH median improvements project

-PCH Las Flores and Rambla Pacifico intersection improvements

-PCH and Trancas Canyon Road intersection improvements

The City currently has $8 million dollars of funds obligated towards future PCH safety improvement projects, including:

-PCH median improvements near Paradise Cove and Zuma Beach

-Traffic safety improvements at PCH and Big Rock Drive

-Pedestrian undercrossing at Corral Canyon Beach (by Malibu Seafood)

PCH TRAFFIC SIGNAL SYNCHRONIZATION PROJECT

-Work started in summer 2023 on the City’s most significant measure to date to improve traffic safety and mobility on PCH. Completion expected in 2025.

-Communications lines will be installed between traffic signals on PCH from Topanga Canyon Blvd to John Tyler Drive to synchronize them to existing traffic conditions, and they will be controlled by the Caltrans Traffic Management Center.

-According to CalTrans, during the past 10 years, there have been more than 4,000 collisions on PCH in Malibu. Speeding and improper turns are the most common contributing factors to collisions, both of which will be directly addressed by the Signal Synchronization Project. The system can also be used to help emergency evacuations move quickly and safely. The $34.6 million project is fully funded through County Measure R transportation funds.

PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING, COLLABORATION WITH PARTNER AGENCIES AND LEGISLATION

PCH is a state highway under the jurisdiction of Caltrans, so Malibu has very limited ability to make changes to PCH. The city does as much as possible to improve safety on PCH within its ability.

-The City dedicates 28.2% of the General Fund, $16.4 million, toward public safety, of which $15 million goes toward our contract with the LA County Sheriff’s Department. The City puts additional funds every year for the Sheriff’s Department to do saturation patrols every weekend.

-Sheriff’s Volunteers on Patrol Program. The City funds the program, including their patrol vehicles – they patrol and report incidents to the Sheriff’s Dept, direct traffic after collisions, offer aid to motorists who have been in collisions and more.

-Sheriff’s Summer Beach Team. The city also funds the Beach Team every summer, which patrols Malibu’s beaches, focusing largely on alcohol consumption on the beach, which is illegal. Their work helps prevent drunk driving on PCH, and last summer they issued more than 1,000 alcohol citations.

-Automated License Plate Readers. The city started installing these tools in 2023 to offer an additional enforcement tool for Sheriff’s Department to address theft, property crimes, and other public safety and crime issues in Malibu by helping to identify suspects in fleeing vehicles, stolen vehicles, suspects with outstanding warrants, etc. The cameras are solar-powered and have backup batteries, can operate day or night, and during a variety of weather conditions.

-PCH Taskforce. For nearly two decades, the City has participated in this active coalition of community representatives, pedestrian and bicycle advocates, law enforcement, city and traffic engineers, Caltrans, and local and state elected officials. Includes cities of Santa Monica, Los Angeles, Malibu and unincorporated Los Angeles County. Collaborating and advocating for traffic safety funding, studies, etc.

-The PCH Taskforce Safety Corridor grant. The grant was awarded to the City on behalf of the PCH Taskforce, funded the purchase changeable message signs for posting traffic safety and emergency messages, three pedestrian and bicycle safety assessments and training events, and educational outreach aimed at all users of the highway, including the PCH Safety Video PSA.

-PCH Safety Study (2015). The study, in collaboration with SCAG, examined road conditions, accident patterns, and proposes strategies to improve safety on PCH in Malibu. The study recommended safety improvements for motorists, cyclists, transit riders and pedestrians. It was funded by a Caltrans Partnership Planning Grant, with a contribution from the City.

-Overnight parking restrictions of RVs and oversized vehicles. The City restricted overnight parking of oversized vehicles on multiple sections of PCH. RVs and oversized vehicles jut out into lanes, reducing visibility, forcing traffic over into the middle of the road, making it hazardous for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.

By Trevor

SMPD Receives Funding For Retail Theft Crimefighting

September 18, 2023 ·

SANTA MONICA—The Santa Monica Police Department was awarded $6.125 million in state grant funding to enhance efforts to combat organized retail theft in the region Governor Gavin Newsom announced this week.

Funding will directly support the ongoing targeted, innovative, and technology-based efforts by the SMPD to improve safety for residents and business owners.

“We are glad that the state has joined forces with local agencies to acknowledge that organized retail theft doesn’t just affect large corporations — it hurts our small businesses, puts employees and shoppers in danger, and it creates feelings of unease and fear in the community,” said Police Chief Ramon Batista.

In an email to Canyon News, Lt. Erika Aklufi noted that further establishes the Santa Monica Analytical Real-Time Center, or SMART Center, which will bring together technology and support staff to synthesize and interpret real-time data to strategically allocate police resources to address crime throughout the region. The SMART Center will help aggregate data and coordinate police response by using existing and coming technology including:

  • Closed-circuit television cameras and a video management system
  • Automated license plate readers, both mobile and at fixed locations
  • Unmanned aircraft systems that can respond to incidents quickly and start collecting information for officers
  • Live911, a program that allows officers to hear 911 calls as they are being received

“There is no understating the benefit our entire community will realize with the establishment of the SMART Center. This cutting-edge hub of information will increase the effectiveness and efficiency of public safety in Santa Monica,” Batista said. “The SMART center will support proactive police work that can prevent crime, acting as an additional layer of safety, identifying crime as it happens.”

Santa Monica was one of 38 local law enforcement agencies awarded funds through the Organized Retail Theft (ORT) Prevention Grant Program. This initiative compliments the continued work the SMPD is doing locally by adding focused deployments in major shopping areas and in conjunction with other local agencies — including joining the Los Angeles County Retail Theft Task Force created to collaboratively address high-profile retail theft incidents.

“Promoting a Clean and Safe Santa Monica is a top priority to support the safety and wellbeing of all who live, work and visit our great city,” said City Manager David White. “I commend the Police Department for the work they’ve already done securing this grant and look forward to seeing the tangible impacts of this funding and future strategic initiatives.”

By Trevor

BHPD Celebrating National Night Out

July 31, 2023 ·

BEVERLY HILLS—The Beverly Hills Police Department indicated in a news release they would be participating in the National Night Out event on Tuesday, August 1, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on the 400 Block of N. Rexford Dr. near the Beverly Hills Library and Beverly Hills Fire Department.

For 2023, the police department will highlight the work

of K-9s with the BHPD and emphasize their role in keeping the community safe and secure.

National Night Out is a community-building campaign that fosters police-community partnerships and promotes neighborhood camaraderie.

The event details are as follows:

  • K-9 Demonstration: 7 p.m.

The BHPD is inviting the community to join the event and witness the K-9 demonstration showcasing skills and abilities of police dogs.

National Night Out will feature displays from various BHPD departments, including the SWAT Team, Real Time Watch Center Drones, Mobile Command Center, BHFD, and various other departments in Beverly Hills. Food trucks, games, and family-friendly activities will be at the event.

Admission to National Night Out is free, and free parking will be available at the Civic Center Parking Garage after 5 p.m.

Attendees are asked to use the official hashtags #K90210 and #NNO90210 in their social media posts.

For more details and updates visit beverlyhills.org/NNO and follow on social media at beverlyhills.org/BHPDconnect.

By Trevor

City Of Malibu Prepares For Fourth Of July Holiday

June 27, 2023 ·

MALIBU—The city of Malibu and the Los Angeles County Fire Department (LACOFD) is reminding the public that fireworks are illegal in Los Angeles County except for professionally operated, permitted displays, as the public gets ready to celebrate the upcoming Fourth of July holiday.

The possession or use of illegal fireworks in Los Angeles County can result in fines up to $1,000 and up to a year in prison. The LACOFD provides a list of public fireworks displays in the County at https://fire.lacounty.gov/fireworks-safety-and-july-4th-celebration-information.

As of June 22, the LA County Fire Department reports that no professional fireworks displays permits have been issued for July 4, 2023.

Malibu City Hall, the Senior Center and the Community Swimming Pool will be closed for the Independence Day holiday on Tuesday, July 4. City parks will be open from 8 a.m. to sunset. Alcohol, open flames and fireworks are prohibited. For more details on city parks and facilities, visit the Community Services webpage.

Malibu is expecting large numbers of visitors, especially on weekends, and “the city is working with partner agencies and putting out public messaging to help keep Pacific Coast Highway, (PCH), canyon roads, beaches and trails safe and clean for all to enjoy,” as stated on the city’s website.

“We urge all visitors who come to enjoy Malibu’s natural beauty to help keep our roads and beaches safe and clean and honor our efforts to protect our community’s safety, peace and quality of life,” said Mayor Bruce Silverstein.

The city encourages residents and visitors to help keep PCH, canyon roads, beaches and trails safe and clean with these messages on social media, with the hashtag #SafeSummerMalibu:

-Don’t drink and drive – designate sober drivers and use rideshares or taxis.

-Keep your eyes on the road – don’t text and drive.

-Slow down and watch for pedestrians and cyclists on PCH and cars pulling in and out of beach parking.

-Pack it in, pack it out – dispose of your trash in trash containers, and if you see litter, please pick it up and throw it away in a trash container.

-Alcohol, dogs and fires are prohibited on beaches in Malibu.

Malibu coordinates every year with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD), Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors, California State Parks, Mountains and Recreation & Conservation Authority (MRCA), and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) to prepare for summer crowds.

The city funds the LASD Beach Team every year from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The beach patrols are an important way to address alcohol consumption on the beaches, which is illegal, and contributes to drunk driving on PCH and canyon roads. Extra traffic officers are also in place to address safety issues on the road.

The MRCA double patrols in its parks from Memorial Day to Labor Day. State Parks will have seven-day coverage and will put extra effort into addressing litter. Beaches and Harbors will increase staffing to assist with parking, maintenance, and trash on the beaches and beach parking lots.

Every summer, Malibu requests additional patrols by LASD and the Sheriff’s Volunteers on Patrol (VOPs). The VOPs are crucial for parking enforcement to ensure beach access and keep the roadways safe, they monitor and report crime and emergencies, and they help direct traffic and ensure safety at accident sites.

Residents can request assistance from CHP with street racing by calling 323-259-3200. Report suspected intoxicated drivers by calling 9-1-1. Residents may sign up for the City’s emergency and traffic alerts (scroll down to “Alert Center”).

In an effort to streamline its emergency communications processes, and in light of the abundance of traffic news and information readily available to the public, Malibu will be providing traffic alerts only during business hours for full road closures (not lane closures); in case of emergencies; or in case of planned or extended closures (such as road or utility projects).

The city will discontinue the Nixle alerting service, which is redundant since Nixle was bought by Everbridge, the system that Malibu uses for disaster notifications. All Nixle subscribers have been merged into the Everbridge system, and will still receive alerts from the City. Eliminating the Nixle system will decrease the time and number of steps it takes to put out emergency messaging.

Malibu will continue to use the website alert system for lower-level emergencies, traffic incidents, utility advisories, and beach advisories by text and email to subscribers when necessary. To sign up for website alerts, or add or remove alert subscriptions, visit the webpage and scroll to “Alert Center.”

For more details about Malibu’s alerting systems, and to sign up, visit the city’s website.

Annual Messaging Campaign To Keep PCH, Canyons And Beaches Safe

May 22, 2023 ·

MALIBU—The city of Malibu is preparing to keep Pacific Coast Highway, canyon roads, beaches and trails safe as Memorial Day weekend begins the start of summer season in the region.

“We urge all visitors who come to enjoy Malibu’s natural beauty to help keep our roads and beaches safe and clean and honor our efforts to protect our community’s safety, peace and quality of life,” said Mayor Bruce Silverstein.

The city reported on its website that Malibu wants residents and visitors to help keep PCH, canyon roads, beaches and trails safe and clean with these messages on social media, with the hashtag #SafeSummerMalibu:

-Don’t drink and drive – designate sober drivers and use rideshares or taxis.

-Keep your eyes on the road – don’t text and drive.

-Slow down and watch for pedestrians and cyclists on PCH and cars pulling in and out of beach parking.

-Pack it in, pack it out – dispose of your trash in trash containers, and if you see litter, please pick it up and throw it away in a trash container.

-Alcohol, dogs and fires are prohibited on beaches in Malibu.

Malibu coordinates each year with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD), Los Angeles County Department of Beaches and Harbors, California State Parks, Mountains and Recreation & Conservation Authority (MRCA), and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) to prepare for summer crowds.

The city of Malibu funds the LASD Beach Team every year from Memorial Day to Labor Day. The beach patrols address alcohol consumption on the beaches, which is illegal, and contributes to drunk driving on PCH and canyon roads. Extra traffic officers are in place to address safety issues on the road.

State Parks will have seven-day coverage and will put extra effort into addressing litter. Beaches and Harbors will increase staffing to assist with parking, maintenance, and trash on the beaches and beach parking lots.

Each summer, Malibu requests additional patrols by the LASD and the Sheriff’s Volunteers on Patrol (VOPs). The VOPs are crucial for parking enforcement to ensure beach access and keep the roadways safe, they monitor and report crime and emergencies, and they help direct traffic and ensure safety at accident sites.

The city does not control access to the state and county beaches in Malibu, and wants to reassure the Malibu community that it is working with its partner agencies on messaging to visitors to Malibu about the importance of keeping PCH, canyon roads and beaches safe and clean for all.

Residents can request help from CHP with street racing by calling 323-259-3200. Report suspected intoxicated drivers by calling 9-1-1. Residents may sign up for the City’s emergency and traffic alerts at www.MalibuCity.org/News (scroll down to “Alert Center”).

Malibu will discontinue the Nixle alerting service, which is redundant since Nixle was bought by Everbridge, the system that Malibu uses for disaster notifications. All Nixle subscribers have been merged into the Everbridge system, and will still receive alerts from the City. Eliminating the Nixle system will decrease the time and number of steps it takes to put out emergency messaging.

The city of Malibu will continue to use the website alert system for lower-level emergencies, traffic incidents, utility advisories, and beach advisories by text and email to subscribers when necessary. To sign up for website alerts, or add or remove alert subscriptions, visit www.MalibuCity.org/News and scroll to “Alert Center.”

For more details about Malibu’s alerting systems, and to sign up, visit www.MalibuCity.org/EmergencyAlerts.

Improvements To Wilshire Boulevard To Enhance Safety, Transit Service

April 19, 2023 ·

SANTA MONICA—The city of Santa Monica reported on its website that construction for safety enhancements on Wilshire Boulevard on the corridor between Ocean and Centinela Avenues is slated to begin on Monday, May 1. Developed as part of the Wilshire Safety Study, which evaluated the 2.4-mile corridor, incorporated community feedback and crash data analysis to determine the most effective and high-impact approach to enhancing transportation safety and transit service. The modifications aim to enhance safe routes to schools while also promoting pedestrian and bicycle travel to nearby establishments such as grocery stores and health care facilities.

“I am thrilled about the upcoming safety improvements to Wilshire Boulevard,” says Santa Monica Mayor Gleam Davis. “These changes will enhance the safety of our residents and visitors while promoting a more walkable and livable community. Santa Monica is committed to intelligent street design that promotes safety, equity, and accessibility for all modes of transportation.”

Planned Wilshire Boulevard improvements include:

-Infrastructure Upgrades: Complete repaving of Wilshire Boulevard followed by improved road markings, refreshed crosswalks, and painted areas to make it clearer where pedestrians can cross.

-Pedestrian Visibility: Highly visible flashing beacons at five intersections will signal to motorists that they must yield to the pedestrian crossing the street.

-Hot Spot Solutions: To reduce the number of collisions at 14 intersections without traffic signals, the side streets will be restricted to right turns only. Although few vehicles continue straight or turn left at these intersections, they are involved in a disproportionately high number of collisions. Approximately one out of every five collisions at these locations occurs when drivers make a left turn or continue straight.

-Transit Improvements: Bus stops will be marked with bright red pavement to discourage private vehicles from blocking them. Loading zones will be installed next to bus stops so that vehicles have a space to pick up and drop off passengers without creating blockages. Bus stop enhancements will improve transit service for Big Blue Bus Route 2, and Metro Routes 20 and 720. Transit ridership is expected to increase in the Wilshire Boulevard corridor upon completion of the Metro Purple (D Line) subway extension to Westwood, scheduled to open in phases between 2024-2027.

-Better Bike Connections: Special markings at four intersections will create dedicated space for cyclists to safely cross Wilshire Boulevard.

“With these changes, the community is taking a major step toward realizing our Vision Zero goal of eliminating fatal and severe injury crashes from our streets by 2026. Additionally, we will be able to provide faster and more reliable bus service for our customers, ultimately making it easier for them to access all that Santa Monica and the Westside has to offer,” said Ed King, Director of the Santa Monica Department of Transportation. “We are committed to creating a transportation network that meets the needs of our community, and these improvements are an important step towards that goal.”

The commu

nity engagement process which lasted over a year, included close to 20 presentations to neighborhood groups and schools, stakeholder meetings, on-the-street canvassing, digital outreach, and a comprehensive social media campaign. Forty percent of public comments identified difficult crossing conditions as a concern on Wilshire Boulevard.

The improvements are part of a comprehensive initiative to make the street more accessible for pedestrians and will continue with Phase 2 next year. Phase 2 improvements are in the design stage and will focus on more permanent changes like concrete curb extensions, and improved lighting.

For more details about the Wilshire Boulevard Safety Enhancements, visit santamonica.gov/mobility-projects/wilshire-boulevard-safety-enhancements.

By Donald