News

Barron Park residents warn of traffic 'danger zones'

Four streets rise to the top of list in neighborhood

Last Friday, Tish Loeb's husband was driving behind a white sedan that had stopped at the intersection of Barron and La Donna avenues in Palo Alto. When the sedan started moving again, Loeb's husband suddenly saw a girl fly through the air.

"She was fully in the intersection. The sedan had T-boned her back (bicycle) wheel," Loeb's husband told her.

The sedan driver did not stop to help but instead sped off, Loeb said. Fortunately, the child was not injured, according to Palo Alto police Agent Marianna Villaescusa.

The April 20 incident is just the latest in a string of hit-and-run collisions and near misses along streets and crosswalks in the Barron Park neighborhood, which lies west of El Camino Real and north of Arastradero Road. Now the residents' Barron Park Association has convened a traffic subcommittee to try to address the dangers.

The subcommittee is first directing its efforts to problems that are "actionable" in the very near term, association President Jon Affeld said. Four streets and certain intersections are particularly dangerous: Maybell Avenue from Baker Avenue to Coloumbe Drive; Matadero Avenue from Whitsell Avenue to El Camino Real; Kendall, La Donna and Whitsell avenues' intersections with Barron Avenue; and the Los Robles Avenue cul-de-sac.

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"Maybell is the No. 1 danger zone," Affeld said, noting that people have been hit by the side-view mirrors of passing cars and at least a dozen parked cars have been damaged.

On Matadero, people come off a speed bump meant to slow traffic and race toward El Camino to catch the traffic light while it's green, he said.

Affeld said residents have communicated their strong support to him for the reconvened committee. Loeb, who has seen too many incidents, said the speeding from cut-through traffic trying to avoid the major streets and from parents bringing their kids to school has gotten out of hand.

"I know of two other families whose kids were hit and where the people didn't stop (to help)," she said. "It's amazing — amazing — how fast people drive."

She also witnessed a car hit a bicyclist on Barron Avenue.

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Traffic is especially dangerous during the morning commute, she said. She and her children were in a crosswalk last year near Barron Park Elementary School and another child was walking in front of them when they were all nearly struck by a speeding car. Loeb said she heard the car engine speed up to get through the crosswalk before they could all get across.

People aren't the only hit-and-run victims: Garret Sinks and his wife recently nearly lost their cat. When his wife came home from work, she found the feline under a bush in their yard, unable to walk.

"The biggest part of this is even though it cost me $5,200, which I didn't have, the thing that bothers me is that whoever did it just kept driving. They don't realize what pain and suffering not only the animal but the owners of the pet go through," he wrote in an email this week.

"I think the issue now is to deal with the speeding," he said.

Affeld said his son was also hit at Arastradero Road and Donald Drive, another location residents say is dangerous because of changes the city of Palo Alto has made to Arastradero to slow traffic. The city added a "bike box" for cyclists at Donald and Arastradero to wait in, but the box is too narrow and is at an intersection with visibility problems, residents have said. Cars on Arastradero frequently run the light at high speed, they claim.

Speeding isn't the only issue. Cars parked along the neighborhood's curbs occupy the bike lanes and cause bicyclists to ride in the traffic lane. Construction companies have fences, debris and workers' cars extending into the bike lanes. And bicyclists create danger by wearing headphones, riding several abreast or not observing traffic laws, he said.

To address the hazards in the four hot spots, the traffic subcommittee has already put together a list of nearly 20 problems and potential solutions. Affeld said they have identified which group can be responsible for correcting the problem — schools, the city or homeowners.

Schools can give kids a grace period if they are late to prevent rushing to school and use a combination of education and traffic enforcement to teach about bicycle laws.

Homeowners can be alerted to overgrown vegetation that interferes with roadway visibility, and a city code-enforcement officer can notify residents or construction companies of illegally placed fencing. The city can expand no-parking zones around corners, adjust traffic lights, add markings, adjust speed bumps and move poles and obstacles that obstruct views or contribute to collisions.

Subcommittee members have taken photographs and videos of notorious intersections, Affeld said. They have reached out to the Palo Alto Unified School District and to city Chief Transportation Official Joshuah Mello's office. The next steps will be to follow up with the schools and city and to invite representatives from both to join the subcommittee, he said.

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Barron Park residents warn of traffic 'danger zones'

Four streets rise to the top of list in neighborhood

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Fri, Apr 27, 2018, 6:47 am
Updated: Mon, Apr 30, 2018, 8:26 am

Last Friday, Tish Loeb's husband was driving behind a white sedan that had stopped at the intersection of Barron and La Donna avenues in Palo Alto. When the sedan started moving again, Loeb's husband suddenly saw a girl fly through the air.

"She was fully in the intersection. The sedan had T-boned her back (bicycle) wheel," Loeb's husband told her.

The sedan driver did not stop to help but instead sped off, Loeb said. Fortunately, the child was not injured, according to Palo Alto police Agent Marianna Villaescusa.

The April 20 incident is just the latest in a string of hit-and-run collisions and near misses along streets and crosswalks in the Barron Park neighborhood, which lies west of El Camino Real and north of Arastradero Road. Now the residents' Barron Park Association has convened a traffic subcommittee to try to address the dangers.

The subcommittee is first directing its efforts to problems that are "actionable" in the very near term, association President Jon Affeld said. Four streets and certain intersections are particularly dangerous: Maybell Avenue from Baker Avenue to Coloumbe Drive; Matadero Avenue from Whitsell Avenue to El Camino Real; Kendall, La Donna and Whitsell avenues' intersections with Barron Avenue; and the Los Robles Avenue cul-de-sac.

"Maybell is the No. 1 danger zone," Affeld said, noting that people have been hit by the side-view mirrors of passing cars and at least a dozen parked cars have been damaged.

On Matadero, people come off a speed bump meant to slow traffic and race toward El Camino to catch the traffic light while it's green, he said.

Affeld said residents have communicated their strong support to him for the reconvened committee. Loeb, who has seen too many incidents, said the speeding from cut-through traffic trying to avoid the major streets and from parents bringing their kids to school has gotten out of hand.

"I know of two other families whose kids were hit and where the people didn't stop (to help)," she said. "It's amazing — amazing — how fast people drive."

She also witnessed a car hit a bicyclist on Barron Avenue.

Traffic is especially dangerous during the morning commute, she said. She and her children were in a crosswalk last year near Barron Park Elementary School and another child was walking in front of them when they were all nearly struck by a speeding car. Loeb said she heard the car engine speed up to get through the crosswalk before they could all get across.

People aren't the only hit-and-run victims: Garret Sinks and his wife recently nearly lost their cat. When his wife came home from work, she found the feline under a bush in their yard, unable to walk.

"The biggest part of this is even though it cost me $5,200, which I didn't have, the thing that bothers me is that whoever did it just kept driving. They don't realize what pain and suffering not only the animal but the owners of the pet go through," he wrote in an email this week.

"I think the issue now is to deal with the speeding," he said.

Affeld said his son was also hit at Arastradero Road and Donald Drive, another location residents say is dangerous because of changes the city of Palo Alto has made to Arastradero to slow traffic. The city added a "bike box" for cyclists at Donald and Arastradero to wait in, but the box is too narrow and is at an intersection with visibility problems, residents have said. Cars on Arastradero frequently run the light at high speed, they claim.

Speeding isn't the only issue. Cars parked along the neighborhood's curbs occupy the bike lanes and cause bicyclists to ride in the traffic lane. Construction companies have fences, debris and workers' cars extending into the bike lanes. And bicyclists create danger by wearing headphones, riding several abreast or not observing traffic laws, he said.

To address the hazards in the four hot spots, the traffic subcommittee has already put together a list of nearly 20 problems and potential solutions. Affeld said they have identified which group can be responsible for correcting the problem — schools, the city or homeowners.

Schools can give kids a grace period if they are late to prevent rushing to school and use a combination of education and traffic enforcement to teach about bicycle laws.

Homeowners can be alerted to overgrown vegetation that interferes with roadway visibility, and a city code-enforcement officer can notify residents or construction companies of illegally placed fencing. The city can expand no-parking zones around corners, adjust traffic lights, add markings, adjust speed bumps and move poles and obstacles that obstruct views or contribute to collisions.

Subcommittee members have taken photographs and videos of notorious intersections, Affeld said. They have reached out to the Palo Alto Unified School District and to city Chief Transportation Official Joshuah Mello's office. The next steps will be to follow up with the schools and city and to invite representatives from both to join the subcommittee, he said.

Comments

resident
Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 8:36 am
resident, Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 8:36 am

If you submit a photo of cars or construction furniture blocking the bicycle lanes to PaloAlto311, while the police come and tow away the scofflaws? Clearly, enforcement of existing street safety laws is a big problem.


Catty
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 9:13 am
Catty, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 9:13 am

Sorry, but you don't have to stop if you accidentally hit a cat.


Resident
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 27, 2018 at 9:32 am
Resident, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 27, 2018 at 9:32 am

Perhaps they would like a roundabout to help keep them safe. :)

Actually, I do like roundabouts but not the ones we have been given as I think they are badly designed.

But the problem of cars parking too close to intersections is real. There should be more common sense about parking too close to a crosswalk.

The other big problem in many areas of town is vegetation growing into sight lines or blocking signs. Some of this has to be down to residents who don't do enough maintenance on their bushes and trees, but a lot of it is the City's responsibility. They can clear branches that pose dangers to utility lines, but they are not able to clear vegetation that hides traffic lights, road signs or create visibility problems which are just as much of a danger to residents as the utilities.


Resident
Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:13 am
Resident, Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:13 am

I have walked those streets every day for and hour a day for the past 12 years. It has gotten more and more dangerous and is certainly caused by speeding drivers.

On my one hour walk I can say without a doubt, the WORST offenders are female parents (or caregivers) who speed and take blind corners (like the curve on Barron Ave) while driving their kids to school. I find this particularly ironic as youl'd think parents of children would be the most cautious drivers due to the small kids walking and biking to school.

I cannot understand anyone blaming shrubbery or lack of roundabouts. People simply need to SLOW DOWN to the speed limit. The police need to enforce the speed limits and raise the the fines for speeding ($500.00 per violation) during school hours.


Clearly, always its speeding drivers
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:18 am
Clearly, always its speeding drivers, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:18 am

Take speeders out of the equation and it seems EVERYTHING else perceived as a danger goes away or is greatly reduced. They must be controlled.


Resident
Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:23 am
Resident, Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:23 am

@Catty said : "Sorry, but you don't have to stop if you accidentally hit a cat."

Yes you do.....

From the California DMV handbook:
"If you kill or injure an animal, call the nearest humane society, police, or CHP. Do not try to move an injured animal or leave an injured animal to die."

.. and any person with an ounce of decency would stop to help the injured animal - accident or not. Please stay off our streets.






Jimmy
Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:40 am
Jimmy, Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:40 am

@catty... WOOOOOW. Don't have to stop.??? What a horrible thing to do and say. KARMA KARMA KARMA


Dan
Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:46 am
Dan, Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 10:46 am

Of course a cat , squirrel or off-leash dog is often hard to see being very low to the ground and they don't exactly follow expected traffic / pedestrian conventions. I don't know why the possibility is discounted that the driver never even saw it and therefore had no idea it had been injured or was even present on the road. Trend to increase density and make roads less car friendly is unfortunately only going to increase these dangers. Lots of people aren't speeding just for the thrill of it ... they can no longer get from point A to point B in a reasonable (and more importantly predictable) time.


Resident
Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 11:02 am
Resident, Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 11:02 am

@Dan: "Lots of people aren't speeding just for the thrill of it ... they can no longer get from point A to point B in a reasonable (and more importantly predictable) time."

Note to all drivers !! when in Midtown it is OK to speed when you feel you're not reaching you destination in a reasonable (and more importantly predictable) time !!!

"Midtown! our motto is "Peddle to the Metal".
and "Its Ok the hit and run, as long as you don't see it."

[Post removed.]


Barron Park Dado
Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 11:57 am
Barron Park Dado, Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 11:57 am

I go through this intersection several times per week. I see speeding cars but more often I see cyclists that run the stop signs. Just this past week I slowed to the stop sign on Barron (coming from El Camino) and an adult cyclist on La Donna ran the stop sign full speed She couldn't see me since the view onto Westbound Barron is blocked.

I'm horrified that the driver didn't stop but the cyclist may well share some blame.


resident
Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 12:06 pm
resident, Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 12:06 pm

On narrow roads with limited visibility, the city needs to paint longer no parking zones near every intersection, especially the ones with heavily used pedestrian crossings. Personal vehicles are a lot bigger now than when these streets were built and parking a SUV or minivan near a crosswalk is a huge safety problem. Car drivers approaching the intersection can't see pedestrians and often can't see the stop sign either, which is a recipe for disaster.


OGBP
Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 12:51 pm
OGBP, Barron Park
on Apr 27, 2018 at 12:51 pm

Another issue (which I don't know of a solution at this point) is the more frequent use of electric cars on the road. Most of the time you can't hear them until they are 'right there'. With so many pedestrians, bicyclists, kids, pets in our neighborhood — the need for slower speeds is even more imperative as cars/trucks become quieter and folks on both sides are more distracted.

I am convinced our cat was killed by an electric car several months ago as he was normally frightened and 'speedy' when cars/trucks are present.


Resident
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 27, 2018 at 12:58 pm
Resident, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 27, 2018 at 12:58 pm

We do need more red painted curbs at intersections. We do need more trimming of trees.

And yes, visibility is an issue when it comes to traffic safety. Our bikers like to wear dark colors and in shadows on sunny days they can be almost invisible. Bikers also like to ride without lights at night and wear dark clothes.

On sunny days particularly early and late, the sun can be almost blinding. Yes, we know to drive much slower as a result, but the vegetation and dark clothes of pedestrians and bikes is a big problem particularly when they are unexpected (stepping out without looking to cross a street, riding the wrong side of the street, suddenly changing direction about which way they are going etc.) so it is important that all road users take safety into account and are much more aware of their surroundings and their part in keeping safe.


@Dado
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 1:03 pm
@Dado, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 1:03 pm

Speeders are a CONSTANT on that road. Stop sign running cyclists are much more infrequent. Slow the cars and everything falls into place and everyone is safer. It's not about tit-for-tat, its about safety for all, and constantly speeding cars are INFINITELY more dangerous and able to harm others than are the kids on bikes. Let's please keep focus where it belongs, despite how you feel about the bikes.

Once we have control of the main problem of speeding cars we can focus on the less dangerous, but still important to address, ancillary problems of the bikes and peds.


resident
Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 1:04 pm
resident, Midtown
on Apr 27, 2018 at 1:04 pm

Yes, parent need to teach their kids to ride in the middle of narrow lanes, not in the gutter that is often shaded and hard to see on bright sunny days. "Narrow lanes" means almost any street with car parking on the side and no marked bike lane. The city is painting bicycle arrows in the middle of the lanes on many streets to not-so-subtly tell bicyclists and car drivers what part of the lanes that bicyclists belong in. Parents have to do their part and teach their kids to obey this.


@resident
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 1:13 pm
@resident, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 27, 2018 at 1:13 pm

Once cars go the speed limit all sorts of good things happen, like reaction times to avoid bad behaving cyclists. This is about safety, not a matter of "I'm not going to slow down because someone else isn't obeying the law"

Slow the speeders and we all get to live.


Dan
Midtown
on Apr 28, 2018 at 3:07 pm
Dan, Midtown
on Apr 28, 2018 at 3:07 pm
Neighbor
Green Acres
on Apr 28, 2018 at 3:42 pm
Neighbor, Green Acres
on Apr 28, 2018 at 3:42 pm

I have nearly been hit by someone running the red light at that Donald/Arastradero intersection because of zero visibility.

That intersection is a dangerous mess, and what they’ve done is encourage bikes to think that they should pull around cars to the right across their bumpers to get in front at intersections. Since the City put that “bike box” that doesn’t resemble a real bike box in, I’ve observed that same behavior from kids on bikes at other intersections many times and sheer luck is the reason some of those kids weren't killed.

Safety measures aren’t safety measures if they only work if people behave perfectly or never make mistakes, and they certainly aren’t safety measures if they require intense, detailed instructions in writing beforehand, especially if they don’t resemble any kind of standard.

Thank you BPA. Jon Affeld, so sorry to hear what happened to your son. Would you like Greenacres neighbors who have been complaining for months about that intersection to join in?


Zayda
Registered user
Barron Park
on Apr 28, 2018 at 3:54 pm
Zayda, Barron Park
Registered user
on Apr 28, 2018 at 3:54 pm

I'm reminded of a poem I learned many years ago.
"Let's say a prayer for Johnny McVay,
He died defending his 'Right of Way'
He was right, dead right as he drove along,
But now he's just a dead as if he'd been wrong."

You only have the 'Right of Way' when someone else gives it to you.


Maya
Old Palo Alto
on Apr 29, 2018 at 8:29 am
Maya, Old Palo Alto
on Apr 29, 2018 at 8:29 am

Let's expand the conversation to include all of Palo Alto. There's no doubt accidents city wide are on the rise. In one day, yesterday I saw 3, yes 3 accidents. In one day! Never ever in 55 years of living in Palo Alto have I seen 3 accidents, or even 2 in a single day. One rollover on 280 S at Page Mill, a hit and run on Embarcadero and Newell, and an accident on University and 101! On Friday I saw a road rage incident on Stanford Ave right next to Escondido school. On Friday afternoon a car through the stop sign on Lincoln and Bryant almost hitting 3 teens on bikes. It's a horrible new attribute of Palo Alto.


Neighbor
Green Acres
on Apr 29, 2018 at 9:52 am
Neighbor, Green Acres
on Apr 29, 2018 at 9:52 am

“That intersection is a dangerous mess, and what they’ve done is encourage bikes to think that they should pull around cars to the right across their bumpers to get in front at intersections. Since the City put that “bike box” that doesn’t resemble a real bike box in, I’ve observed that same behavior from kids on bikes at other intersections many times and sheer luck is the reason some of those kids weren't killed.”

Has anyone else noticed that at every intersection on East Meadow, there are little tiny spaces with bike images in them, as if the City is secretly indicating to bikes to pull out in front of cars across their bumpers from the right to left for a teeny tiny suggested “bike box”. One kid did this at Middlefield and continued on to the corner, lucky not to have been broadsided by left turners. This is truly unsafe practice to encourage young learners to ingrain, especially since it’s neither universal nor SAFE.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Apr 29, 2018 at 10:43 am
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Apr 29, 2018 at 10:43 am

"the city needs to paint longer no parking zones near every intersection, .."

Just painting no parking zones would be fine. But on Middlefield at every intersection between Embarcadero & Oregon, they've not only painted no parking zones but they've added poles there AND added big half-dome dots.

The street sweepers can't clean withing these "zones" and they prevent drivers from turning off the street when there's lots of congestion -- and prevents a lot of us from getting out of our driveways and /or going in the desired direction without cutting through nearby neighborhood streets to go miles out of our way.


Focus please
Barron Park
on Apr 29, 2018 at 10:49 am
Focus please, Barron Park
on Apr 29, 2018 at 10:49 am

@Maya: "Let's expand the conversation to include all of Palo Alto."

Lets not.
This article is about the efforts of Barron Park residents to address the accidents in their neighborhood.
You are free to start your own article about the entire city, but do not hi-jack this discussion.


Jonathan Brown
Ventura
on Apr 30, 2018 at 11:48 am
Jonathan Brown, Ventura
on Apr 30, 2018 at 11:48 am

The City insists that these streets are "Safe Routes to School." Balderdash! Painting white "Sharrows" doesn't make a narrow street with no sidewalk or bike lane safe for an elementary school child (almost by definition these are novice, inexperienced, small-sized/hard-to-see bikers) to bike when we have ride sharing services and visitors driving rental cars in hotels on the same route, not to mention the habitual speeders trying to get to work (or their workout). These routes continue to be accidents waiting to happen (again). The City has made some good improvements to bike routes to other schools. Now it's way past time to take safe biking to Barron Park Elementary School seriously.


Bill
Barron Park
on Apr 30, 2018 at 11:59 am
Bill, Barron Park
on Apr 30, 2018 at 11:59 am

Here on Kendall Ave, right by the apartments, there is a notch, a curve in the road. People park on that curve leaving little room to see ahead or to easily get around and through it. That curve should be painted red. As well, a few people come blasting down Kendall most often toward El Camino at speeds I sometimes cannot believe. It's dangerous.

Another street that's a serious problem area is North California. Why did the city lay that street out with no white line down the middle? It's sometimes insane driving down it especially when the kids are either going to school or are leaving for home. And, bike riders, kids, need to ride inside the bike lane, not four abreast out into the street.


duveneck
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 30, 2018 at 12:04 pm
duveneck, Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 30, 2018 at 12:04 pm

This morning an adult male bicyclist ran a stop sign, dangerously cutting me off when I was mid-way through an intersection (with no stop sign in my direction). He never slowed. He was very upset and gave me the finger. At least the kids have less attitude.


A former resident
another community
on Apr 30, 2018 at 12:08 pm
A former resident, another community
on Apr 30, 2018 at 12:08 pm

Eleven years ago I was driving south on El Camino Real near Cibo (Fernando St). I was in the middle lane, at dusk, driving the speed limit and my view was screened by the car in front of me, to the left. There happened to be an elderly woman crossing the street from East to West. She suddenly appeared and I had little time to stop. I slammed on my brakes but I unfortunately hit her. I jumped out of my car and she was in shock. I was as well but luckily there were a lot of people who helped out. She was taken to Stanford where she had serious injuries for someone her age (about 80 years) but she recovered slowly.

I spoke to her daughter because I felt so badly but the daughter didn't want to have anything to do with me. I wanted to let her know how badly I felt and that there was nothing I really could have done to prevent this.

I went back to the site of the accident and I realized that Fernando Avenue has a crosswalk but no traffic light and it's poorly lit. However, just south, which according to Google Maps is 350 feet away, there is Margarita Avenue, which has a traffic light.

I realized that for an elderly person 350 might be a far distance but how can Palo Alto, with good conscience, encourage a person to cross at Fernando. It's unconscionable. I wrote to the city about this and I see that little has changed.

I was not charged with an offense, and after obtaining the police report, I became incensed. Witnesses indicated that the woman was almost hit crossing from the east side to the median. She was unlucky (and so was I) in that I was ultimately the one who hit her on her way from the median to the west side of ECR.

This issue isn't addressed in the article. Do NOT put crosswalks on El Camino where there is poor lighting and no traffic light. It's just common sense. The city must have a risk management department and it's hard to believe they can be blind to such an obvious zone that presents daily danger.


Every Day
Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 30, 2018 at 2:40 pm
Every Day, Adobe-Meadow
on Apr 30, 2018 at 2:40 pm

This morning driving east on Oregon Expressway a driver rolled a right turn through a red stop light and nearly into me, cutting me off as I had to slam on the brakes and swerve. I honked, then he decided to play "stop short" games with me. He finally stuck his hand out the window and flipped me off before finally leaving me alone.

Later, on the freeway I watched 4 other similar instances of aggression, speed and rage form others on the road (did not involve me) This was during my 25 minute commute today and sadly, it was not anything particularly different from most other days. I see the same behaviors from drivers multiple times a day, every single day.


BE the Change.
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 30, 2018 at 4:21 pm
BE the Change., Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on Apr 30, 2018 at 4:21 pm

Everyone is complaining about all those "other people." If each of us takes responsibility for behaving legally and safely, that will be a very good start toward more civil road behavior.

Talk with your kids about good citizenship on the street. MODEL good citizenship by driving safely and legally. PAUSD students are taught traffic safety skills in school. Pay attention to the flyers that come home to mom and dad when they have had a bike rodeo or bicycle/pedestrian safety class. Reinforce the skills by PRACTISING with them. Observe vehicle code EVERY time you use the road. The life you save may be your own.

The entire Bay Area (and a lot of the nation) has congestion problems. This is not unique to Palo Alto. Recognize that it takes longer to get places. Leave earlier. Give yourself time to drive safely. Your car has the power and weight to kill someone. YOU are responsible for any harm you do by being careless.

We can all help by using transit, walking and biking as often as possible. Fewer cars makes a safer, more comfortable community for everyone.

Be part of the solution.


Resident
Barron Park
on Apr 30, 2018 at 5:11 pm
Resident, Barron Park
on Apr 30, 2018 at 5:11 pm

Hope the police are working to catch the hit and run driver.


Neighbors?
Menlo Park
on Apr 30, 2018 at 8:16 pm
Neighbors?, Menlo Park
on Apr 30, 2018 at 8:16 pm

I don't get it. This neighborhood is a decent labyrinth from what I see on the map. Are the problem drivers neighborhood residents, or cut through from/to Charleston? If cut through, just shut down Clemo at Maybell or Charleston and Maybell at Amaranta. Problem solved.


Resident
Barron Park
on May 1, 2018 at 6:14 am
Resident, Barron Park
on May 1, 2018 at 6:14 am

The problem drivers are in order:
1. parents and caregivers driving their kids from/to school
2. Local residents
3. Cut through drivers.

#3 is rising in the ranking as el Camino and Charleston/Arastadero congestion worsens.


Neighbor
Green Acres
on May 1, 2018 at 7:31 am
Neighbor, Green Acres
on May 1, 2018 at 7:31 am

@Neighbors?
Clemo already is closed off at Maybell. People cut through at several other streets as they try to avoid the Arastradero mess. Thank you for hooefully deterring a few people by suggesting it is a maze, but unforunately not.

The biggest problem with Maybell is that it is a substandard street, very narrow, and the City has ambitions as it does in so many places in town that lead to magical thinking and ignoring reality and resident feedback..

The City could help the situation by making the street a no parking zone from Clemo to almost El Camino. It could have completely solved that situation after the Maybell referendum by keeping the property (they had first right of refusal) and peeling off some of it to add to the Arastradero Apartments which are seriously underparked, but that would have meant they couldn’t keep up the charade about how much parking such a development needs. Or that the perpetual overflow parking problem exists. The same is true along El Camino Way which is an important biking route and utterly substandard between El Camino and East Meadow, that would be so improved if the City would just make it no parking on the bay side, but that’s a much harder one to solve for the many cars that park there and in the neighborhood from the underparked developments. The Goodwill seems to rent much of its parking lot out but it’s not enough. The City ignores conditions on the ground in favor of believng green paint and sharrows magically fix dangerously narrow spaces.


Julian Richardson
Esther Clark Park
on May 1, 2018 at 9:23 am
Julian Richardson, Esther Clark Park
on May 1, 2018 at 9:23 am

I too think that speeding had got out of hand. I regularly see cars doing 40-50 mph on Manuela Avenue in a 25 mph zone. There is no sidewalk or bike lane so pedestrians and cyclists are at risk. On Arastradero it is rare to see a car doing LESS than 35 mph, in a 25 mph with three schools.


Driver Behavior is the problem.
Registered user
Duveneck/St. Francis
on May 1, 2018 at 12:53 pm
Driver Behavior is the problem., Duveneck/St. Francis
Registered user
on May 1, 2018 at 12:53 pm

Drivers are behaving incredibly badly. We need PAPD to aggressively hand out tickets.

I also think that a driver who gets more than two or three tickets in a year should have his license temporarily revoked--just like good parents take away driving privileges from errant teenage drivers. If some adult drivers behave like impulsive children, they should be treated like them.

Cars can kill. Driving is privilege, not a right. When did self-entitlement replace old-fashioned civility? When you behave like this are you creating the kind of community you want to live in? Please be more careful out there.


eileen
Registered user
College Terrace
on May 2, 2018 at 8:16 am
eileen , College Terrace
Registered user
on May 2, 2018 at 8:16 am

When my kids were going to Escondido years ago there were parent and student crossing
guards wearing special vests. It was kind of cool to be selected as a kid. What happened to that program??

Why not ask all the schools to get these programs going again? Personally, I think we could put
money into these safety programs instead of endless and costly intersection upgrades.

Ask parents, kids, or maybe hire people (seniors) to be CROSSING GUARDS at peak times!
And the crossing guards can gently remind the kids to not bunch up at the corners and overflow into the street.

Voila, problem solved!


Concerned PA Citizen
Registered user
Barron Park
on May 2, 2018 at 8:54 am
Concerned PA Citizen, Barron Park
Registered user
on May 2, 2018 at 8:54 am

I see cars driving 45 mph in a 25 mph zone all the way down Matadero Ave.
Those small speed bumps are useless.
Very dangerous for kids and pedestrians in the area.

What needs to be done to increase the size of the Matadero speed bumps?

And how can we get those digital displays that show you how fast you're going?

Thanks,
Concerned PA Citizen


Bill Kelly
Barron Park
on May 2, 2018 at 9:39 am
Bill Kelly, Barron Park
on May 2, 2018 at 9:39 am

When the speed bumps on Matadero were first installed they were higher and cause more people to slow down. People complained and they were lowered within a month of installation. High end luxury cars can now take the speed bumps without slowing down (BW's Audi's etc). So much for 25 MPH with speed bumps. When I drive 25 mph I usually have someone tailgating me.


Be the speed bump
Adobe-Meadow
on May 2, 2018 at 9:45 am
Be the speed bump, Adobe-Meadow
on May 2, 2018 at 9:45 am

Bill Kelly, I'm with you in regards to collecting "rear bumper idiots" whenever I drive the speed limit. I learned, though, that by golly suddenly people are driving the speed limit behind me, albeit a bit to close sometimes. It's an empowering way to get drivers under control in the areas you frequent.

I encourage all here to be the speed bump. Take control of our roads from the cut-through drivers and the speeders by simply driving the speed limit and ignoring anyone tailgating you. It's time.


This is Crazy!
Green Acres
on May 2, 2018 at 4:34 pm
This is Crazy!, Green Acres
on May 2, 2018 at 4:34 pm

I hate to say this, but the morning commute to briones is crazy! the high schoolers DONT stop at any of the stop signs. Its frustrating. I also feel like it's a game of chicken, because when I try to cross an intersection, where I made a COMPLETE stop, its like these students are looking at you to see if you will stop for them as they continue to ride through the stop. Now, I agree. people drive too fast....but the bikers ride like they own the joint!



eileen
Registered user
College Terrace
on May 3, 2018 at 9:41 am
eileen , College Terrace
Registered user
on May 3, 2018 at 9:41 am

I've almost been hit a couple of times trying to cross El Camino at California Avenue.
The drivers turing right onto California from El Camino are oblivious to the people in the crosswalk.

I keep my eyes glued to the cars when crossing for my own safety! Never trust the approaching car
because you might get hit! The driver is usually off the hook with tons of excuses, sun in my eyes etc...


Resident
Barron Park
on May 9, 2018 at 3:48 pm
Resident, Barron Park
on May 9, 2018 at 3:48 pm

Has any progress been made by the police or anyone to identify the person who did this hit and run?


Resident
Barron Park
on May 16, 2018 at 10:50 am
Resident, Barron Park
on May 16, 2018 at 10:50 am

I heard that identification and arrest was made but have not seen any verification of this. Can the PA Weekly or anyone verify this or determine the status?

I would be a sad day if the hit and run driver were to be able to just get away. Even worse since this was a school child.

Is anything being done to increase safety on the school routes?


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