Pre Media Release Bike Ped Enforcement Operations

The Santa Maria Police Department will step up Bike & Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operations on Thursday September 8, 2016 with focused enforcement on collision causing factors involving motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists. Funding for this operation is part of a $357,000 grant provided by the California Office of Traffic Safety.

The department has mapped out locations over the past three years where pedestrian and bike collisions have occurred, along with the violations that led to those crashes. Extra officers will be on-duty patrolling areas where bike and pedestrian traffic and crashes occur in an effort to lower deaths and injuries.

Officers will be looking for violations made by drivers, bike riders and pedestrians alike that can lead to life changing injuries. Special attention will be directed toward drivers speeding, making illegal turns, failing to stop for signs and signals, failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks or any other dangerous violation.

Additionally, enforcement will be taken for observed violations when pedestrians cross the street illegally or fail to yield to drivers who have the right of way. Bike riders will be stopped and citations issued when they fail to follow the same traffic laws that apply to motorists. All riders are reminded to always wear a helmet – those under 18 years of age must wear helmets by law. Pedestrians should cross the street only in marked crosswalks or at corners.

Locally, The Santa Maria Police Department has investigated over 300 injury collisions involving pedestrians and bicyclists during the past three (3) years, with 11 of those resulting in fatalities. In 2012, California witnessed 612 pedestrian and 124 bicyclists killed that year while nationally; 4,743 pedestrians and 726 bicyclists were killed. The Governors Highway Safety Association’s & the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 2012 Data reports reveal that California leads the nations in bicycle and pedestrian deaths.
This is one of ten different operations that will focus on bicycle and pedestrian safety in our city over the next five months. In addition, the grant will provide funding to conduct 93 individual operations for the following traffic-related issues:

  • DUI Checkpoints (19)
  • DUI Roving Saturations (30)
  • General Traffic Enforcement (13)
  • Distracted Driving (12)
  • Traffic Safety Presentations (7)
  • Bike/Pedestrian Operations (10)
  • Suspended License Operations (1)
  • Suspended License/Probation Operations (1)

Funding for this program is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
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Ralph Martin,
Chief of Police 
Contact Person: Sergeant Duane Schneider, Traffic Bureau Supervisor
Santa Maria Police Department
Telephone Number: (805) 928-3781 Ext. 1176
E-mail Address: dschneider@cityofsantamaria.org