March 4, 2024 #1 Local News, Forum, Information and Event Source for Venice Beach, California.

Despite Vision Zero Traffic Deaths in LA Are Soaring

2021 deadliest year in nearly two decades for pedestrians in LA

By Sam Catanzaro

In 2015, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti launched Vision Zero, intended to eliminate traffic deaths by 2025. More than five years after the launch of this program, traffic deaths in the city are soaring, reaching their highest number in nearly 20 years. 

294 people were killed in traffic collisions in 2021, LA List recently reported on Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) data. Not only does this represent a 22 percent increase from 2020, but it is also the highest toll since 2003. Around half of those killed in these collisions were not in vehicles themselves, including 132 pedestrians and 18 cyclists. Furthermore, 1,479 traffic crashes resulting in severe injuries occurred on LA streets in 2021, a 30 percent increase from 2020. 

Traffic fatalities increased across the city in 2021, except for the LAPD Central bureau area, which includes downtown LA and Silverlake. 

Overall, since Garcetti launched Vision Zero, traffic deaths in Los Angeles have increased 58 percent. Since then, traffic deaths have jumped 58%. So how did this get this bad? 

Colin Sweeney, a spokesperson for the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT), told LA List that one common factor is “a deadly combination of dramatic increases in speeding and reckless driving.” Between January 2020 and June 2021, 78 crashes involved a vehicle traveling at unsafe speeds. This is around the same number (80) of unsafe speed crashes occurring in a longer two-year period between 2018 and 2020. Likewise, between January 2020 and June 2021, 50 fatal crashes involved a motorist striking a fixed object, compared that 39 such collisions for all of 2018 and 2019 combined.

In addition, Sweeney cited to LA List “design trends that make cars deadlier than ever before for individuals outside of the vehicle, with heavier frames and the addition of distracting features.”

2021 data shows that while the number of crashes resulting in a death where the driver was under the influence remained the same, the number of DUI crashes resulting in serious injuries increased by 31 percent. 

According to Sweeny, since the launch of Vision Zero, LADOT has completed 5,500 safety improvements on the city’s High Injury Network. This is the 6 percent of city streets that account for 70 percent of deaths and severe injuries for pedestrians. But pedestrian activists say this is not enough and the city’s approach is not working. 

“The formula and the campaign that is being run by the city in terms of reducing traffic fatalities to zero is a failure,” Damian Kevitt, executive director of the nonprofit Streets are for Everyone told LA List. “The biggest factor is there’s not the political will to make the hard decisions to save lives.”

Reflective of this lack of political will is the lack of funding to address to issue. In 2017, LADOT director Seleta Reynolds estimated the department needed around $80 million to reduce traffic deaths by 20 percent by the end of that year. The City Council-approved budget, however for that year only gave LADOT $27 million in funding towards implementing Vision Zero. That year, traffic deaths dropped citywide by only five percent. And since, this number has decreased. The 2021-2022 City budget provides Vision Zero projects around $13.7 million, according to data from Los Angeles City Controller Ron Galperin

Mayor Garcetti’s office could not immediately be reached for comment.

Related Posts

El Medio Bluffs Home With Canyon and Ocean Views Lists for $3.4M

March 4, 2024

March 4, 2024

The 4-bedroom, 3-bathroom house is distinguished by a central skylight Situated in the El Medio Bluffs of Pacific Palisades, this...

Seven-Bedroom Beachfront Home Lists for $12.5M

March 4, 2024

March 4, 2024

Built in 1929, Amenities Include a Sparkling Pool, Home Theater and Elevator  This beachfront residence, boasting panoramic views from Palos...

Instagram Executive Puts Spanish-Style Venice Home on the Market

March 3, 2024

March 3, 2024

Nestled in the heart of the East of Lincoln neighborhood, the bungalow includes coved ceilings According to a report by...

Security Officers Being Deployed at Big Blue Bus Stations and Routes

March 1, 2024

March 1, 2024

The Guards will be provided by a firm with other security contracts with the city of Santa Monica  By Zach...

Venice Shorts: Mayor Karen Bass Taps Mike Newhouse for the Los Angeles Planning Commission

February 29, 2024

February 29, 2024

Attorney, husband, father, homeowner, small business advocate and longtime community activist joins LAPC By Nick Antonicello  Mike Newhouse, a resident...

Update: DSW Taking Over 99 Cent Store Space on Lincoln

February 29, 2024

February 29, 2024

Designer Shoe Warehouse retailer will assume some 15,000 square feet of retail space next to Whole Foods By Nick Antonicello  ...

Upcoming Ice Cream Shop on Montana Ave. Will Serve Multitude of Vegan Flavors

February 29, 2024

February 29, 2024

The Company Has Come a Long Way Since Its Humble Beginnings as a New York City Food Truck By Zach...

Venice Shorts: What Will Become of the Old 99 Cents Store Location?

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Closed Since January, It Remains Unclear Who Will Occupy This Space at 201 Lincoln Boulevard By Nick Antonicello The future...

This is Warehouse Restaurant’s Happy Hour Menu

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Its Outdoor Happy Hour Takes Place on the “Pond” By Zach Armstrong Since 1969, the Warehouse Restaurant in Marina del...

(Video) Restaurants Replace Glass Front Doors After Late Night Robbery Spree in Del Ray

February 28, 2024

February 28, 2024

Seven restaurants and small businesses in Del Rey and Venice, including Nick the Greek and Dudley Market, were robbed. Council...

The Yo! Venice Interview: Ericka Wiley Makes Her Case for a Seat on the L.A. Bench

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Public Defender promotes progressive Democratic Party, labor endorsements in this competitive three-way race come March 5 By Nick Antonicello Most...

Venice Shorts: Marina Freeway Cleaned and Cleared

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

After reporting on a string of RV’s and campers at this site in Del Rey, LA city officials removed all...

Overnight Burglaries Rattle Del Rey, Venice: LAPD Investigates String of Incidents

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

Seven Businesses Targeted, Including Nick the Greek and Dudley Market The Los Angeles Police Department officers are investigating a series...

Downtown Wellness Center Bridges Gap Between Psychedelics and Meditation

February 27, 2024

February 27, 2024

The Center Has Partnered With Local Agencies and Gave Free Sessions to Around 500 Veterans in Two Years By Zach...

Venice Shorts: “Grom” Day Coming This Sunday

February 26, 2024

February 26, 2024

Registration runs through Wednesday, February 28  By Nick Antonicello  The Venice Surfing Association (VSA) will be hosting it’s annual Grom...