Santa Monica Police Kick-Off 2015 with More Bike-Ped Safety Operations


The Santa Monica Fire Department keeps a google map of traffic collisions in Santa Monica. There are nearly 100 injuries and an average of five deaths every year on Santa Monica's streets.
This heatmap of traffic collisions in Santa Monica was compiled by local resident, Adam Rakunas, using information from the Santa Monica Fire Department’s Twitter feed. There are nearly 100 injuries and an average of five deaths every year on Santa Monica’s streets.

The Santa Monica Police Department is wasting no time continuing its series of bike-ped safety operations in the new year with the department’s latest targeted enforcement operation scheduled for January 9.

During the operations, which started in November, officers focus on dangerous behaviors by everyone on the road, regardless of whether you are walking, biking, or driving.

The first bike-ped safety operation of the new year took place on January 3 and there will likely be another following the January 9 operation, according to Santa Monica Police Department officials.

Like the operations in November and December, during the January operations, “Officers will be looking for violations engaged by drivers, bike riders and pedestrians alike that can lead to life changing injuries. Special attention will be directed toward drivers speeding, making illegal turns, failing to stop for signs and signals, failing to yield to pedestrians in cross walks and similar dangerous violations,” according to the press release.

Officers will be targeting locations in the city where there is a history of people flouting the rules with dangerous results, officials said.

“The department has mapped out locations over the past five years where pedestrian and bike collisions are prevalent, along with the violations that led to those collisions,” according to the press release. “Extra officers will be on duty patrolling areas where bike and pedestrian traffic and collisions occur in an effort to lower deaths and injuries.”

While, as the release said, special attention will be paid to people driving recklessly, so too will people be targeted for walking or riding bikes and not following the rules of the road.

“[E]nforcement will be taken for observed violations when pedestrians cross the street illegally or fail to yield to drivers who have the right of way. Bike riders will be stopped and citations issued when they fail to follow the same traffic laws that apply to motorists,” the release said.

This was also true during the previous five enforcement actions. According to the Santa Monica Daily Press, during a recent special enforcement operation, a man was arrested after refusing to cooperate with police officers trying to cite him for riding on the sidewalk, which is illegal throughout Santa Monica.

Need to brush up on the rules of the road? Santa Monica Spoke has a handy guide for you, as does the Santa Monica Police Department, which you can see here.

Jason Islas
Jason Islas
Jason Islas is the editor of Santa Monica Next and the director of the Vote Local Campaign. Before joining Next in May 2014, Jason had covered land use, transit, politics and breaking news for The Lookout, the city’s oldest news website, since February 2011.


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