Los Angeles Works to Make Roadway Safety a Priority With Surveys

The surveys are part of an effort to make the streets of LA safer, with a goal of zero fatalities by 2025.

A speed-limit increase of a two-mile section of Chandler Boulevard is being proposed. It is among several streets that could be looking at speed limit changes in a vote scheduled by the City Council Transportation Committee on Wednesday.

The city's Department of Transportation took to the streets to conduct speed surveys. These surveys determine speed limits. The limits are based on state law which considers how fast people normally drive.

"It's almost like a state of lawlessness right now," said Officer Troy Williams, of the Los Angeles Police Department said in 2016 when NBC4 first reported on the lack of valid surveys.

No speed survey means no use of radar or laser guns to enforce speed limits, he said.

A stretch along the 9200 block of La Tuna Canyon has now been surveyed.

A location Sepulveda Boulevard and Vanowen Street is up for review by the City Council Transportation Committee to increase the speed limit from 35 to 40 mph.

La Tuna Canyon and the intersection at Sepulveda Boulevard and Vanowen Street were the home to bad crashes in recent years.

Research shows keeping speed limits below what people would normally drive can actually create more danger.

The city's DOT says the number of enforceable streets has gone from 19 percent to 53 percent citywide since early 2016, about 658 miles. The goal is to have the entire city done by the end of next year.

The DOT adds that 70 percent of the streets on the so-called high-injury network have also been updated. These are places with a concentration of traffic collisions that result in severe injuries or deaths. They plan to have all streets in the high injury network finished by the end of this year.

The NBC4 I-Team has learned there are more than 94 miles of streets proposed to receive an increase in speed limits. Another 52 miles would get a decrease.

All of this is in an effort to enforce speed limits and reduce the number of crashes. Aside from speed surveys they plan engineering improvements as well at many of the roads. LA Mayor Eric Garcetti has proposed a goal of zero fatalities by 2025.

Williams says as of Tuesday, they have seen citations go up, adding crashes have been holding steady after a spike in the last five years. The city says speeding is the number one factor in fatal collisions.

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