There are tens of thousands of DUI arrests per year in AZ (39,746 in 2013 to be more precise). And that’s not counting the many of the over ten thousand hit-and-run drivers reported each year in AZ (11,402 in 2010 to be more precise), all of whom are criminals, thousands of them serious felons, few of whom are ever caught or charged. (hit-and-run from a collision with any injury is a felony, if the injury is serious or fatal the felony is likewise serious).
We only hear about a tiny sliver of these multitude of car crimes, e.g. when it’s somehow connected to public figure, or when a DUI driver causes a death or serious injury, which is so frequent we don’t even hear about all of those. Just in 2013, there were 219 drunk driver involved fatalities, 1/3rd of all traffic deaths that year — that’s the most stringent definition; there were 280 deaths using the “old” definition, NHTSA.
Police try to do their best; what have policy-makers done? Traffic deaths remain the leading cause of death for many Americans; meanwhile where the US was once an safety leader (decades ago) now lags further and further behind traffic safety improvements made by virtually all other developed nations.
April 11, 2015, morning. Cyclist 40’s/M was killed after riding into the intersection of Alma School Road and Southern Ave, Mesa on a red.
This is a right-angle collision, the motorist was SB on Alma School, and the cyclist was EB on Southern. The two media accounts vary slightly regarding the color, or really the phase, of the signal. Both say the motorist entered on a yellow (which is, of course, legal and would give the motorist the right-of-way); The KPHO account, additionally, said “The signal had turned red when the bicyclist entered the intersection” Continue reading Mesa PD: Bicyclist struck, killed after riding through red light→
In 2007 (or was it 2008; it was the 48th 2nd regular session) the state of Arizona inserted a new law into the transportation code that specifcally prevents ADOT (“the department”) from issuing DLs or IDs (i.e. motor vehicle drivers licenses, or in the case of non-drivers, state issued identification cards) that complied with federal REAL ID requirements. HB2677
Tuesday March 31, 2015 time appox early afternoon: the bicyclist was a 20 y.o. female, name not released yet. Police say she was riding SB in a NB lane on 43rd Ave near Bell when an exiting vehicle (possibly the Schwann’s truck seen in the video) turned right and struck her. I.e. the rider was counter-flow in the roadway. This appears to be the NE corner; there is a designated bike lane there, looks to be the driveway nearest Whataburger / Hobby Bench.
The illustration at right is meant to highlight the dangers of sidewalk riding, however the same advice applies to counter-flow street riding, possibly moreso… The driver of a vehicle exiting the driveway when turning right is going to be looking to the left; and especially isn’t expecting any traffic (in the roadway) to approach from his right). Besides the 2013 Scottsdale incident, mentioned below, there have been at least two more recent fatalities, both in Tempe involving wrong-way bicyclists killed in collisions with right-turning drivers (6/12/2014 at Elliot and Harl; and 10/3/2013 at Univerity and Smith). These are, by the way, the only known bicyclist fatalities in Tempe for those two years.
In what has become an annual ritual, a certain cadre of Republican state legislators bring forth numerous bills designed to limit / curtail / eliminate photo enforcement. This posting covers the 52nd Legislature, 1st Regular session’s activities, that is the Spring of 2015. Continue reading Legislation to ban Photo Enforcement→
Cycling, traffic safety, traffic justice, and legal topics; energy, transit and transportion economics