SAN FRANCISCO—The San Francisco Police Department was awarded a $225,000 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (COTS) for their involvement in a year-long endeavor of special enforcements and alerting the public about ways to prevent traffic related injuries and deaths.
According to a press release from the SFPD website, the department will utilize the funds in the city’s goal to keep the roadways safe and to enhance the quality of life by enforcing laws and educating the public.
“Shortly after the tragic death of little 6-year-old Sophia Liu, who was killed while crossing the street on New Year’s Eve in 2013, San Francisco committed to Vision Zero – a policy to eliminate all traffic deaths in San Francisco by 2024. This grant will help us get that much closer to our goal. Specifically, we will be focusing on drivers driving too fast in the areas of senior centers and schools where drivers should actually be travelling at much lower rates of speed because of the presence of our most vulnerable – seniors and children.
We will also be focusing on those that choose to get behind the wheel while under the influence – inexcusable anywhere, at any time. If every driver in San Francisco would commit to taking a little more care to slow down and drive more responsibly we could be a place where no one is ever seriously injured or killed in a traffic collision,” said Police Chief Greg Suhr.
Funds from the grant will be used for: educational presentations, DUI saturation checkpoints, DUI Checkpoints, distracted driving enforcement, bicycle and pedestrian safety enforcement, speed, red light, and stop sign enforcement, specialized DUI and drugged driving training such as Standardized Field Sobriety Testing (SFST), Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) and Drug Recognition Evaluator (DRE).
The city saw a drop in individuals killed and injured in vehicle collisions from 2006 to 2010, but numbers have been slowly rising. There has been an increase in pedestrian and bicycle fatalities, the growth of technology related distracted driving and the drug-impaired driving. Money from the grant will help the SFPD fight against such issues, as well as prevention of drunk driving, speeding and collisions at intersections.
“Overall, California’s roadways are among the safest in the nation,” said OTS Director Rhonda Craft. “But to meet future mobility, safety, and accessible transportation objectives, we have to reverse this recent trend in order to reach our common goal –zero deaths on our roadways. The Office of Traffic Safety and the San Francisco Police Department want to work with everyone to create a culture of traffic safety across San Francisco and the state.”
Funding for the program were provided by the COTS and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.