FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 3, 2020
CONTACT: Jodie Medeiros, Executive Director, Walk SF, email@example.com, 415-596-1580 (cell); Marta Lindsey, Communications Director, Walk SF, firstname.lastname@example.org, 617-833.7654 (cell)
Pedestrian hit and killed at Geary and 38th
Marks 10th pedestrian death this year
San Francisco, Calif. – Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of 68-year-old Lawrence Holman. Holman was hit and killed by the driver of a vehicle when crossing the street at Geary Boulevard and 38th Avenue on December 1, 2020.
“A precious life has been lost to preventable traffic crashes on our streets,” said Jodie Medeiros, executive director of Walk San Francisco. “This is the tenth person to be hit and killed walking this year.” 24 people in total have been killed in traffic crashes in 2020.
Walk San Francisco and members of the San Francisco Bay Area Families for Safe Streets stand ready to support the victim’s family and friends however possible. We will create a temporary memorial at the crash site on Friday, December 4 from 11:00AM-12:00PM. Supervisor Sandra Fewer of District 1 and Supervisor-Elect Connie Chan will be in attendance, as well as neighbors and members of the Richmond Family Transportation Network.
“The City is falling short on its promise to design and enforce streets that keep people safe,” continued Medeiros. “Thousands of people walk on Geary Boulevard every day, yet drivers treat it like a highway. Tragedies like this are all too predictable – and preventable.”
Geary Boulevard is a well-known dangerous street for pedestrians; people walking are 8 times more likely to be in a crash walking on Geary as compared to other San Francisco streets. At the intersection of Geary and 38th Avenue, pedestrians have to cross four lanes of traffic and two parking lanes without a signal. While the speed limit is 30 at this part of Geary, because the road is very wide, people often drive much faster.
Speed is the #1 cause of severe and fatal crashes in San Francisco. The faster a vehicle is going, the more likely its driver is to cause a traffic crash. If a person is hit by a vehicle traveling 20 MPH, they have a 90% chance of surviving. But at 40 MPH, this drops to just a 20% survival rate.
Walk San Francisco is calling on SFMTA to:
- Use all existing authority to lower speed limits on high-injury streets. SFMTA has proposed 25 MPH “Senior Zones” on Bush, Sunnydale, Geary, 19th Avenue, and Thomas More Way. We need these to become a reality immediately.
- Launch a comprehensive, data-driven speed management program as part of the upcoming Vision Zero Action Strategy. The City needs a clear picture on where speeds are the biggest problem, what’s proven the most effective in slowing speeds, and how the range of existing efforts complement each other (and where the gaps are).
- Dramatically expand ‘left turn calming’. This powerful (and affordable) tool to slow vehicles and better protect pedestrians in the crosswalk needs to become widespread on our streets ASAP.
“Of all cities, San Francisco should be one where safety on our streets is the priority,” said Medeiros. “Solutions exist to prevent these tragedies.”
On average, 30 people are killed and nearly 600 people severely injured in traffic crashes each year in San Francisco.
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Walk San Francisco (‘Walk SF’) advocates for streets that are safe for everyone who walks. On average, three people are hit each day while walking in San Francisco. Since our founding in 1998, Walk SF has been leading the way to make San Francisco a pedestrian-first city where people of every age and ability can walk safely. Learn more at walksf.org.
San Francisco Bay Area Families for Safe Streets is made up of survivors and families whose loved ones have been killed or injured in traffic crashes. Learn more at walksf.org/familiesforsafestreets.