Vision Zero update: 2020 traffic injuries + Mayor’s Town Hall

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Mayor's Town Hall on Vision Zero

The City of Alameda has compiled its 2020 fatal and injury crash numbers, and continues to work on making our streets safer. This Vision Zero update contains the following:

Mayor’s Town Hall on Vision Zero

Join Mayor Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft this Friday, February 5, noon-1:00 pm, at her Mayor’s Town Hall focusing on Vision Zero. Hear about the City's efforts to reduce traffic deaths and life-changing injuries to zero, as well as current and future traffic safety construction projects.

2020 fatal and severe injury crashes

In 2020, four people tragically lost their lives and five were severely injured on Alameda streets. While this represents an increase in fatalities over 2019, our numbers are low enough, thankfully, that it would take several years to identify a true trend. The table below shows 2019 and 2020 numbers compared to the average from 2009-2018. (Please note that we found an error in in our previously reported data saying that Alameda has an average of one traffic fatality per year; the correct number is two. We updated the Vision Zero Crash Analysis to reflect this fact.)

Severity Average 2008-2019 2019 2020
Killed 2 1 4
Severely injured 10 6 5
All injuries 221 273 167

For a table showing this data broken down by mode, please see the 2020 Annual Transportation Report. This report is a trove of project updates and data related to traffic safety, from Slow Streets to traffic calming to street maintenance.

High Injury Corridor Daylighting Project

The new High Injury Corridor Daylighting Project is increasing safety at intersections on our most dangerous roads. The City has begun painting red curbs at intersections along eight high injury corridors to improve visibility for motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Right now, vehicles can park near the intersection, resulting in blind spots and increased collisions. The figure below illustrates how parked vehicles can narrow visibility, making it impossible for drivers to see people stepping into the crosswalk.

Illustration showing two intersections: one is daylit and the other is not.

Source: San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency

Alameda’s first protected intersection

The City’s first protected intersection is being constructed at Otis Drive and Grand Street, slated for completion by the end of the month. This will increase safety by physically separating cyclists and pedestrians from cars. This intersection is getting special treatment because it is a high-injury intersection, site of a fatal pedestrian crash, and adjacent to a middle school. Construction pictures are HERE.

This improvement is part of the Otis Drive Project, which will reduce dangerous speeding on Otis from Westline Drive and Willow Street by converting the street from four to three lanes, including a center turn lane and new bike lanes. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) finds that such conversions reduce overall crashes by 19 to 47 percent.

Illustration showing the intersection of Grand and Otis with separated space for bicycles, pedestrians, and autos

Due Friday: your input on the Caltrans Pedestrian Plan

Caltrans is seeking feedback on its draft District 4 Pedestrian Plan. You can review the story map and fill out the survey until this Friday, February 5.

Roundabouts reduce fatalities by 90-100%

Modern roundabouts are powerful Vision Zero tools, reducing fatal and severe injury crashes by 90-100%, per the National Cooperative Highway Research Program. This is because they control speeds and eliminate high-injury crash types, like “t-bone” crashes. Pedestrians are generally safer at roundabouts, with shorter crossing distances and simpler decision-making.

Staff is recommending roundabouts for some intersections in the Central Avenue Project in order to improve safety and traffic flow. We will send you a notification about the upcoming Central Avenue Project virtual open house.

Note that not every circular intersection is a roundabout, and roundabouts are different than large rotaries. For more about roundabouts, see these links:


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