SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - 70 Santa Barbara drivers have been stopped and given tickets in a special enforcement at pedestrian crossings.
Police say they worked areas they know to be problem locations, and they have also responded to calls from residents who are fed up with drivers ignoring pedestrians trying to cross the street.
At one location, State St. and Calle Palo Colorado, police used several motorcycle officers to respond to violations.
Two city employees were used as decoys to cross the street in the crosswalk and point out cars that had an adequate distance to see them, but still drove through without stopping.
At times, more than one vehicle committed a violation.
"Surprisingly enough, a lot of people will say, 'we didn't even see the guy in the crosswalk' and they will be about three feet away. So they are thinking about something else than what they should be at that time," said Santa Barbara Police Sgt. Mike McGrew.
One resident said she crosses very carefully on State St. near MacKenzie Park, but she is always cautious. "It's difficult because people don't honor the crosswalk. You have to keep an eye on people, you have to make eye contact. That is what I have to do," said Molly Kellogg.
This intersection will soon have new lights for pedestrians to activate when they are crossing the street. Police say that will help lower the risk factor.
Enforcement activities took place at the following intersections with these results:
- State Street & Calle Palo Colorado – 42 cites
- De La Vina Street & Arden Road – 7 cites
- De La Vina Street & Calle Laureles – 4 cites
- De La Vina Street & Samarkand Drive – 1 cite
- De La Vina Street & Los Olivos Street – 14 cites
- Milpas Street & Yanonali Street – 2 cites