Contact: Kathleen Ferrier
619-544-9255, x. 301 (office)
Press Release: In Wake of Rising Death Toll, Time for Action on Vision Zero
SAN DIEGO (February 17, 2016) ---
In the wake of two tragic traffic fatalities last week, the transportation advocacy group Circulate San Diego is calling on City Leaders to dedicate funds in next year's budget to save lives.
A beloved community leader of Mission Beach and an 85-year old man from Mira Mesa lost their lives last week in preventable tragedies. Manuta Gardner was hit as a result of road rage and the gentleman was hit while crossing the street.
These deaths are not the first this year and come when at least three others were seriously injured while walking or bicycling in the same time period. Further, they come on the heels of 2015 where 54 people lost their lives in traffic crashes, and where the number of serious injuries among people walking rose 42% from the previous year.
Circulate San Diego and a diverse coalition of 20 organizations have been promoting a program for the last year called Vision Zero that would end these deaths to San Diego.
The concept behind Vision Zero is to reach zero traffic deaths through safer street design, education, and enforcement. The program has been successful in other U.S. and European cities.
San Diego's City Council adopted a Vision Zero resolution last October to support the goal of zero traffic deaths in San Diego by 2025. Since then, Circulate SD has worked with Mayor Faulconer's office and City staff to form a Vision Zero Task Force and create a 1-year implementation strategy. A draft of the strategy is expected to be completed in April to coincide with the City's budget cycle and ensure that funds are allocated towards a Vision Zero program in the FY2017 budget.
According to Jim Stone, Circulate San Diego's Executive Director, "While we are thrilled to have Mayor Faulconer's support for Vision Zero, now is the time to act. As he prepares his budget for next year, we are calling for money to be dedicated to save lives by implementing Vision Zero. This means funding to make safety improvements on our roads and implement broad based education to promote safe behaviors."
Circulate San Diego is a regional non-profit organization 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.