Pedestrian safety: California lawmakers push new legislation to make streets safer

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – Over 1,000 Californians died annually in speed-related traffic collisions over the past five years.

To combat the problem, a California lawmaker announced new legislation that aims to save lives by making city streets safe.

“My son Kyle is no longer here because of a preventable crash,” Gina Leblanc said.

Family members of loved ones killed by drivers speeding on streets in the Bay Area are voicing their support for Assembly Bill 550.

It is statewide pedestrian safety legislation that includes automated speed enforcement cameras proposed by California state assemblymember David Chui.

“Our bill will direct the California State Transportation Agency to convene a stakeholder working group to establish guidelines for street safety pilot programs on dangerous local streets and active work zones. A pilot would be operated by a local transportation agency and require local jurisdictions to adopt strict privacy protections. Citations would be civil and not criminal, add no points to a driver’s record, be capped at $125 with alternative diversion programs for low-income drivers, and appealable at a hearing,” Chiu said.

San Francisco Mayor London Breed and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf fully support AB-550.

“Every year in San Francisco 30 people are killed, and more than 500 are seriously injured while traveling on our city streets,” Breed said.

“Just last year Oakland lost 3 beloved mothers killed by speeding cars while crossing in crosswalks near schools,” Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said.

“Crashes like the one that destroyed our family are preventable. That’s why Assemblymember Chiu’s Legislation AB-550 is critically important,” Jenny Yu said.

Privacy rights advocates and civil liberties groups defeated similar legislation proposed by Assemblymember Chui back in 2017.

He is taking another run at it because “we have to say enough is enough because these deaths are utterly preventable.”

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