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Drivers Need to Obey Stop Signs

Clearly 83 traffic citations, which is less than three per day, aren’t doing anything to change our city’s poor behavior when it comes to stop signs.
In my daily half-hour run, I could easily give out twice that. It seems the city has given up. A while ago, I attended a city meeting about traffic-slowing measures proposed for Oakwood Avenue. Several residents suggested adding a stop sign, but we were informed by the city that stop signs are not considered a traffic-slowing measure (because drivers don’t stop). However, we residents didn’t like the city’s proposal to add chicanes to narrow the street and the city didn’t like the residents’ suggestions either, so there’s been no change. Though we may not like them, we do need stop signs, and we need to get better as a community at following the traffic rules.
I’d like to add a few “favorite ignored stop signs” to Joshua Potter’s list:

  1. Craig Avenue and Oakwood Avenue. Drivers turning south from Craig onto Oakwood rarely look southbound before driving completely through the crosswalk.
  2. Oakwood Avenue and Knight Way. My family was almost run over by a driver who did in fact stop, but somehow failed to notice four adults and a stroller crossing the street and drove through the intersection just as we’re halfway across the road and about to step into her path.
  3. Knight Way and Gould Avenue. Although most obey our crossing guard during pickup and drop off, not all do. At other times, watch out. I had a similar experience of a driver not looking forward and nearly running me down just a few weeks ago.
  4. Knight Way and Crown Avenue. Cars come down the hill fast and don’t bother to slow down much. There was a time when I saw the same car run through that intersection before 7 a.m. several days a week.
  5. Crown Avenue and Baptiste Way. Another intersection that people ignore in the early morning hours.
  6. Baptiste Way and Hampton Road. It’s not a high traffic area, which I think makes driver’s less concerned with stopping here.
  7. Gould Avenue and Houseman Street. This one is a real problem, especially in the early morning and when it gets late. Tall bushes at the corner also hampers visibility on the southeast corner making crossing from this point especially dangerous.
    If it’s dark, I run with a reflective vest and lights. Still, I’ve been nearly run over many times in both broad daylight and the dark.
    Two things surprise me when it comes to traffic safety in this town:
  8. Why don’t more pedestrians make any attempts to make themselves visible at night by wearing light colored or reflective clothing and carrying a flashlight?
  9. How is it that haven’t had more accidents involving cars and pedestrians and pets?
    Will writing more traffic citations cause us to change our behavior or just make drivers grumpy? I don’t know, but something needs to change.
    I’m off for a run now; please don’t run me over!

Kim Blaha
La Cañada Flintridge

First published in the April 4 print issue of the Outlook Valley Sun.


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