Press Release: Terrible accident in City Heights shines light on continuing uptick in pedestrian injuries and deaths

Contact: Kathleen Ferrier

619-544-9255, x. 301 (office)

619-571-5231 (cell)

kferrier@circulatesd.org 

SAN DIEGO (August 11, 2015) ---  

Last Friday, two teenage boys were injured while walking in the City Heights neighborhood. One of the victims, a 13-year old boy, had his leg pinned down by the passing car and suffered severe injuries.  According to San Diego Police, the boys were hit by a white Volvo which subsequently fled the scene, making this the second hit and run crash involving a pedestrian, in the last two weeks, the previous occurrence on Market Street.

This terrible incident shines light on the developing epidemic of an increase in collisions with people who walk in the City. According to Circulate San Diego and its coalition of partners, these deaths are preventable and action must be taken. 

“ I want to cry myself because it was a terrible accident”, said Osman Egal, observer of the incident.

Jim Stone, Executive Director of Circulate San Diego, responded “We are distressed at the alarming increase of these incidents, especially as they occur time and time again on the same corridors like University Avenue. This cannot go on. Each of these persons injured or killed is somebody’s loved one. They are not just statistics on a page.”

report released earlier this year by Circulate San Diego named University Avenue as one of 8 corridors where collisions with pedestrians are concentrated. In fact, the University Avenue corridor alone has accounted for almost 20% of pedestrian collisions in the last 15 years.

The City of San Diego is a leader among regional cities in pedestrian injury and deaths.  A report released by the San Diego Police Department earlier this year confirmed the number of collisions resulting in injury for people walking and bicycling in the City had increased 32% between the first quarters of 2014 and 2015.

Collisions with pedestrians are also up across the County. Data released by the County Medical Examiner office earlier this month confirmed a 35% uptick in pedestrian collisions and deaths throughout the San Diego region last year.

Circulate San Diego has asked City leaders to support a strategy called Vision Zero, to set a goal to eliminate all traffic deaths in San Diego by 2025.  A resolution supporting the creation of a Vision Zero strategy in the City of San Diego is expected to go before the City Council in September.

Vision Zero in San Diego is supported by a coalition of leading transportation, business and community based organizations and the thousands of members they represent. A similar strategy has been implemented in cities around the country, including New York City, where officials reported a 13 percent reduction in pedestrian fatalities in the one year since the program began. 

About: Circulate San Diego is a regional non-profit organization formed through the merger of Move San Diego and WalkSanDiego, San Diego County's leading organizations dedicated to advancing mobility and making the region a better place to move, work, learn, and play. Our work focuses on creating great mobility choices, more walkable and bikeable neighborhoods, and land uses that promote sustainable growth.


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