LAPD Completes Sting on Unsafe Drivers in South Los Angeles

Earlier today, the LAPD Southwest Division engaged in a sting on unsafe drivers that threaten pedestrians attempting to cross the street.  With marked squad cars and motorcycles flanking the intersection, police officers crossed the street legally in unmarked crosswalks.  The officers were out of uniform, but were still carrying badges and even guns in plain view.  A news van was also parked nearby.  With such an amazingly visible police presence, you would think that the sting would be skunked.  After all, who would be brazen enough to flagrantly violate traffic laws with a small army of law enforcement officers camped out on the street?

The unsurprising answer for anyone who has regularly tried to cross the streets of Los Angeles on foot is obvious.  Despite doing everything short of posting signs saying DRIVE SAFELY OR WE'RE GOING TO TICKET YOU IN THE NEXT THIRTY SECONDS, the officers still averaged handing out one ticket for every minute of the sting.  Heck, the even sent out a bulletin to people signed up for traffic alerts over email, which can be read after the jump.

Hats off to the LAPD Southwest Division for thinking outside of the box to try and improve pedestrian safety, after all we've seen less progressive efforts by other branches of the LAPD, but the massive levels of violations suggest that a lot more education is needed before we can consider our streets safe for pedestrians.

Community Message has been issued by the LAPD - South Traffic.

Friday January 8, 2010 09:08 AM PST

Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation to be conducted in the area of the Southwest Division

What:   Pedestrian Safety Enforcement Operation

When:   Friday, January 8, 2010
   7:00 a.m. – 11: a.m.

Where:  The enforcement operation will be conducted in the area of Southwest Division along Adams Boulevard from Figueroa Avenue to Crenshaw Boulevard.  The schedule for enforcement is as follows:

7:30 A.M., Normandie Ave & 25th Street
8:30 A.M., Adams Blvd. & Kenwood Ave.
9:30 A.M., Adams Blvd. & Ellendale Pl.
10:30 A.M., Adams Blvd. & Portland St.   

Who:    LAPD South Traffic Division    

Why:    This operation will be conducted in an effort to promote safety through the enforcement of          vehicle verses pedestrian enforcement details in an effort to improve pedestrian safety, to change dangerous pedestrian behaviors, to change dangerous driver behavior, to change dangerous behaviors near school(s) and to reduce injury(s), death, and property damage associated with pedestrian verses vehicle traffic collisions.  

The Officer-in-Charge is Sergeant Arturo R. Gomez, South Traffic Division, Community Traffic Services Unit. Captain Philip S. Fontanetta, Commanding Officer South Traffic Division along with approximately (6) traffic enforcement officers, (3) collision investigation officers, (1) traffic enforcement sergeant from the Los Angeles Police Department, along with personnel from Southwest Division will be involved in the Pedestrian Crosswalk Safety Enforcement operation.

For further information you can contact Sergeant Arturo R. Gomez, South Traffic Division.  He can be contacted by news media via his cell phone at (805)559-9637.