Police decoy crossing SE Foster Road with a classic, “You better stop,” glare. (Photo: Portland Police Bureau)
What does it take for people to stop when someone’s trying to cross the road?
How about being on a commercial corridor full of shops? Maybe crosswalks with median islands and flashing lights? Perhaps a pandemic that asks everyone to lighten the load of first responders and hospitals? How about the presence of police officers – one of whom is acting as a decoy?
It seems not even these things work for some people who are so selfish and rude they ignore Oregon law and put innocent lives at risk.[Read more…]
The City of Portland recently conducted one of their regularly scheduled “crosswalk enforcement missions” (a.k.a. traffic stings) on Northeast Glisan at 134th Place. Portland Police Bureau officers made about one stop every three minutes during the 90-minute mission and handed out a mix of citations and warnings for everything from careless driving to failure to wear a seatbelt. [Read more…]
In a statement to BikePortland that he also posted to his Facebook page, Reardon said, “I am pleased that this public service ad has captured people’s attention. It is a tongue-in-cheek approach to the tragic reality of pedestrian injuries and fatalities.”
But as victims of traffic crashes, advocates for vulnerable road users, and experts in the communications and safety fields from all over the country and the world have pointed out to him in the past two days, the much more serious problem is that our roads are dominated by people in large motor vehicles who have no regard for the safety of others.
On Tuesday, the same day Rep. Reardon launched his campaign, police officers in his district actually did something about the problem.
The Happy Valley Police Department just released a statement about a crosswalk enforcement action they completed on August 8th. The mission specifically targeted automobile users at two high-risk intersections. Police say they were spurred into action by citizen complaints that people’s high-speed driving was putting walkers at risk.[Read more…]
Of course people drive dangerously here. The road design encourages it.
How rampant is illegal and dangerous driving in Portland?
In just two hours last night the Portland Police Bureau wrote 43 citations (for 61 separate violations) and handed out 23 written warnings*. The ‘Vision Zero traffic safety mission’ was carried out between 6:00 and 8:00 pm on Southeast Hawthorne Blvd between 12th and Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.
In a press statement, the police said, “This area was selected due to numerous community complaints and it is a high traffic area for all road users.”
This section of Hawthorne area is also full of shops, eateries and popular destinations. Despite a motor-vehicle oriented road design that hasn’t changed in decades, inner Hawthorne is one of the most iconic commercial districts in Portland. Just a few blocks east of where this enforcement action took place is the location where 15-year-old Fallon Smart was hit and killed last August while trying to cross at SE 43rd. [Read more…]
The Traffic Division is stationed right at the eastern end of the bridge and they took advantage of their presence on last night’s ride to conduct an enforcement action — a.k.a. “traffic safety mission”. The bureau also said the recent death of Mitch York was a key motivator of this action.
The result: According to a police bureau statement they made 43 stops in just two hours. 30 citations were written and they made 13 warnings. The violations were “numerous” but predominantly for speeding. One person was arrested for driving on a suspended license.
Imagine if we did more enforcement like this and Joel Schrantz — the man driving with a suspended license who lost control of his vehicle and killed Mitch York on Saturday — was arrested before he had a chance to commit that tragic act of violence? [Read more…]
PPB officers camped out on Highway 26 up near the Oregon Zoo to catch speeders. Read their press release below for how that turned out…
53 CITATIONS ISSUED DURING A #VISIONZERO TRAFFIC SAFETY MISSION
News Release from Portland Police Bureau Posted on FlashAlert: October 12th, 2016 3:04 PM Downloadable file: Vision_Zero.jpg On Tuesday October 11, 2016, the Portland Police Bureau’s Traffic Division conducted a Vision Zero traffic safety mission on the Sunset Highway at the Oregon Zoo overpass. For approximately two hours, officers conducted high-visibility enforcement and education stops.
In total, 53 traffic citations were issued along with three written warnings. The average citation speed was 70 MPH in the 50 MPH zone. This location was selected for the mission due to the number of crashes that occur on the Sunset Highway.
This mission was conducted in an effort to address the high number of traffic crashes this year resulting in serious physical injuries or death. So far this year, 32 people have died in traffic-related crashes.
The Traffic Division and Precinct operations will be conducting future enforcement missions as staffing allows.
The Portland Police Bureau is committed to working with our partners in government and the community to create safer streets and work towards reducing, and eventually eliminating, traffic fatalities as part of Vision Zero.
Despite the serious risks to their pocketbooks, their community, and themselves, a large number of Portlanders continue to display rampant illegal and dangerous behaviors when behind the wheel of an automobile.
Police wrote up 60 violations in less than four hours at this location last week. (Photo J. Maus/BikePortland)
Illegal and dangerous behaviors are rampant on the streets of Portland. Most of us who use the streets are keenly aware of this, but every time the Bureau of Transportation does a crosswalk enforcement action we see the problem even more clearly.[Read more…]
PBOT’s Crosswalk Enforcement Action program has been going strong since 2005. We checked in on one back in September and have reported on them many times over the years. The idea is simple: Place a human decoy (sometimes a notable politician but more often PBOT safety staffer Sharon White) in a crosswalk and wait for people to break the law while a phalanx of Portland Police motorcycle officers wait in the wings, armed with radar guns and quick twists of the throttle to chase people down.
The efforts are usually quite fruitful and they offer us a small window into the rampant disregard many road users have for the law.[Read more…]