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CONTACT: Jodie Medeiros, Executive Director, Walk SF,, 415.596.1580 (cell)

Two pedestrians killed in West Portal, one a toddler, and two more pedestrians in critical condition

One of the worst pedestrian tragedies to ever occur on San Francisco streets

San Francisco, Calif. – According to the SFPD, at least two pedestrians were killed today at West Portal Avenue and Ulloa Street around 12:30PM today. A driver crashed into a Muni bus stop, hitting people at the stop. Walk SF is awaiting additional information about the crash and pedestrian victims, but we have learned the devastating news that the deceased pedestrian victims included an adult male and a toddler. An adult female and baby were also hit and are in critical condition.

“We are heartbroken and heartsick and horrified,” said Jodie Medeiros, executive director of Walk San Francisco. “This is one of the worst pedestrian tragedies to ever occur on San Francisco streets. It is almost beyond comprehension.”

Walk San Francisco and the San Francisco Bay Area Families for Safe Streets community stand ready to support the loved ones of the victim however possible.

“We believe countless people across San Francisco share our grief and outrage. No one should die while simply waiting for the bus or crossing the street in our city,” said Medeiros.

Continued Medeiros, “We must stand together to show that the people demand serious, large-scale changes so streets prioritize our safety above all else.”

Walk San Francisco will hold a vigil for the victims on Monday, March 18, at the crash site at 5:00PM.

The intersection where the crash occurred, Ulloa Street and West Portal Avenue, is at the West Portal Muni station and has three Muni bus stations. West Portal Elementary School and the West Portal Branch Library are nearby. West Portal Avenue is a major commercial corridor with significant foot traffic and the K and M Muni rail lines running on the surface.

“It’s time to fundamentally rethink areas like where this crash occurred, where thousands of people walk and cross and wait every day,” said Medeiros. “As San Francisco enters its second decade of Vision Zero, it’s time to re-envision streets for people and make the necessary tradeoffs to prioritize safety first every time.”

This is the second child killed in a crash in less than a year. A four-year-old girl, who was riding in a stroller pushed by her parents, was hit and killed by a driver on August 15, 2023 at the intersection of 4th & King Streets.

“When children are being killed on our city’s streets, this should get everyone’s attention. We demand city leaders to use every possible solution to make our streets safe,” said Medeiros.

On Tuesday, the SFMTA Board of Directors will discuss proposed locations for the city to pilot speed safety cameras, which San Francisco will install 33 of in early 2025.

Speed is the #1 cause of severe and fatal traffic crashes in San Francisco, and as vehicles become larger, heavier, and more powerful, the stakes with driving fast become even higher for a pedestrian if they are hit.

Pedestrians are highly vulnerable as speed rises above 25 MPH. The most frequently cited study on speed and risk of fatality shows that at 25 MPH and under, a person has a less than 1 in 4 chance of being severely injured or killed if they are hit. But by 40 MPH, this flips, with 75% of pedestrians suffering life-threatening injuries or dying.

“It’s an important step for San Francisco to be able to start using speed cameras, a proven, lifesaving tool,” said Medeiros. “But speed cameras are one tool, when the threat requires every possible tool. We’re asking the City to take additional actions when cameras are launched to slow our streets.”

On Thursday, Walk SF published a blog with details on three key actions to slow dangerous speeding beyond speed cameras.
San Francisco is about to reach its ten-year anniversary of Vision Zero, a commitment and proven approach to end severe and fatal traffic crashes.

“Tragedies like this are a deeply painful reminder of how much work remains for the City to realize Vision Zero,” said Medeiros. “While important progress has been made, the pace and scale isn’t enough given the threat we all face on our streets.”

New York City, the first city in the United States to adopt Vision Zero, had its lowest pedestrian deaths on record in 2023. The layered, comprehensive, aggressive approach that New York City has taken to Vision Zero is credited for the significant progress.

These are the fifth and sixth pedestrian deaths in San Francisco in 2024; more than double at this time last year and the previous year. The first was a 72-year old man on January 31st at Fulton and Arguello. The second was a 32-year-old man, David Bridges Jr., who was hit and killed at 6th and Bryant Street on February 8, 2024 by a hit-and-run driver. The third was a 76-year-old man who was hit crossing at Alemany Boulevard at Rousseau Street in the Excelsior neighborhood on February 25, 2024. The fourth was Michael Lukehart, a 41-year-old man who was fatally hit by a driver on March 2, 2024 at the intersection of Golden Gate Avenue and Hyde Street.

17 people were killed while walking in San Francisco in 2023, and pedestrians accounted for 65% of all traffic-related fatalities. Nationally, pedestrian deaths are at a 40-year historic high.

Walk SF is supporting State Senator Scott Wiener’s new safe streets bills, SB 960 and SB 961.

SB 960 would hold our state transportation department, Caltrans, accountable for designing its surface roads to be ‘Complete Streets’ for the most vulnerable users: people walking, biking, and taking transit. Cities all over the state including San Francisco have Caltrans roads running through neighborhoods. Here in San Francisco, Park Presidio, Lombard Street, 19th Avenue, Skyline Boulevard, Van Ness Avenue, Sloat Boulevard, and San Jose Avenue are overseen by Caltrans. These are all designated high-injury streets because of crash rates and have long needed safer designs.

SB 961 would require all vehicles built or sold in California to have safe driving technology so they are unable to drive more than 10 MPH above the speed limit (emergency vehicles are exempt). SB 961 also includes a much-needed and overdue requirement for large trucks exceeding 10,000 pounds manufactured, sold, or registered in the state to have side underride guards. Underride guards can prevent pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists from being swept under and run over by a large truck’s rear wheels.

Citywide, around 30 people are killed and more than 500 severely injured each year on San Francisco streets. Older adults make up 50% of these fatalities annually.

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Walk San Francisco (‘Walk SF’) advocates for safe streets for everyone who walks, which is everyone. 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.

San Francisco Bay Area Families for Safe Streets is a group of people who have been directly affected by traffic crashes, including crash survivors and people whose loved ones have been killed or injured in traffic crashes. Learn more.