Residents speak out about pedestrian safety after deadly crash

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SAN DIEGO -- David Alvarez didn’t even hear the car brakes.

“We ran over as soon as it happened,” he said.

Alvarez and his coworkers were crossing the 4600 block of El Cajon Boulevard in the Little Saigon District Monday night when an SUV suddenly hit a pedestrian.

“We tried rushing over to see what we could do to help,” Alvarez said. “Brought over the jack to try and lift the car up just get the person out.”

The pedestrian, a woman in her 60s, died on the way to the hospital. Alvarez said the woman didn’t use the crosswalk.

“There’s not enough action being taken,” said Beryl Forman, marketing and mobility coordinator for the El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association.

“We feel bad, but what are the results?" she said.

She says that the three- to four-mile stretch of El Cajon Boulevard has continued to get more dangerous, its businesses become more popular and the Rapid Bus Line more in use.

“El Cajon Boulevard is actually the second most deadly corridor based on pedestrian fatalities and injuries,” she said.

Her organization has been pushing to get additional crosswalks added, including artistic crosswalks that are easy to see. They also want to see additional speed limit signs and longer pedestrian walk signals at stoplights. She says she thinks one of the most effective changes would be lowering the speed limit by 5 miles per hour.

“We know that when you’re driving under 30 miles per hour, the likelihood of someone being killed is 90% less,” she said. “So we would like to lean towards 30 instead.”

The organization is calling on city engineers to make the changes. They say the city has already made one helpful change: narrowing the lanes of traffic from three lanes to two, allowing buses and bicycles to use the third lane. She thinks that will slow speeds as well.

A city spokesperson told FOX 5 Tuesday that suggestions like these take time because traffic impact studies need to be done, but plan to update FOX 5 with their thoughts and suggestions moving forward.

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