During the first six months of 2021, Santa Clarita saw over 550 collisions. This is an increase over the previous year during the same time period.
The majority of accidents involved improper turning, speeding, failure to yield, driving under the influence, following too closely, traffic signal/sign violations and unsafe lane changes. As a community, we can do better.
“It is very disappointing that we continue to see a prevailing attitude of ‘do as I say, not as I do,’ where large numbers of motorists seem to recognize the risks of certain behaviors but do them anyway. Enhancing the safety culture in society must begin with each individual.”
– President and CEO for the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety Peter Kissinger
These most recent findings from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety’s annual survey that assesses and benchmarks the attitudes and behaviors of drivers revealed that the prevalence of unsafe driving behaviors are widespread including:
Red light running: Almost a third (31 percent) of drivers admit to running a red light in the past 30 days, yet 86 percent say it is very or extremely dangerous and 94 percent say it is completely unacceptable.
Speeding (10+ mph) on residential streets: Nearly half of drivers report speeding (42 percent), yet 64 percent say it is very or extremely dangerous and 87 percent say it is completely unacceptable.
Texting/emailing: More than a third (34 percent) of drivers report typing or sending a text or email, yet 95 percent of drivers say it is very or extremely dangerous and 96 percent say it is completely unacceptable.
According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, when it comes to specific distracted driving behaviors:
- 4 in 10 drivers reported talking on their cell phone
- 1 in 3 drivers reported reading a text or email on a cell phone
- 1 in 3 drivers admit to manually texting or sending an email on a cell phone
THE CITY’S PLAN
It is clear that we all need to change our driving behaviors and make our roadways safer. The City and the Sheriff’s Department are increasing our traffic safety enforcement, engineering and education (the three E’s) in an effort to improve safety on our roadways.
Over the last five years, City traffic engineers have modified 31 traffic signals for safety reasons. While Santa Clarita’s collision rate is below the state average, we still want to do more to improve City roadways for enhanced safety.
Targeted enforcement on major thoroughfares, an education and outreach campaign and more discussion in the community will commence this year along with a hard-hitting, targeted outreach campaign.