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Workshop to discuss improving traffic safety in Turlock

POSTED September 1, 2016 7:10 p.m.

A recent study found that Turlock has a higher rate of traffic incidents than many other similar sized cities in the state has prompted city officials to take a multi-pronged approach at making the roads in town safer for motorists and pedestrians, including an upcoming traffic safety public workshop.

The City of Turlock, in partnership with representatives from California State University, Stanislaus, and the Turlock Unified School District, will host a traffic safety workshop to discuss the available tools, strategies and steps these entities are taking to reduce collisions and improve safety for roadway users.  The workshop will be held at 6 p.m. Sept. 21 at City Hall.

“Increasing the safety on our city streets is a high priority to our Council,” said Mayor Gary Soiseth. “We appreciate the partnership with Stanislaus State and the Turlock Unified School District to address concerns at key intersections and to enhance safety for all of our residents, whether they are walking, biking, or driving on our roadways.”

This will be an opportunity for residents to share their traffic safety concerns with agency personnel that represent the education, engineering and enforcement components of traffic safety. 

“The purpose of the workshop is to develop open communication between government and residents in an effort to educate, communicate and foster meaningful improvements in the community,” said City of Turlock Transportation Engineering Supervisor Wayne York in a news release.

 

The California Office of Traffic Safety examined traffic reports from 2013 for 103 like-sized cities and ranked them according to the rates of occurrences. Turlock was ranked 31st for collisions that resulted in fatalities or injuries, with 365 traffic collisions. For collision involving pedestrians Turlock was 44th with 22 collisions. Turlock was 40th for collisions involving bicyclists with 28 collisions, and 42nd in collisions involving motorcycles, with 12 collisions.

The Turlock Police Department reported an overall increase in collisions in the city. In 2015, there were 847 accidents in Turlock, an increase of 2 percent from 2014. The number of non-injury accidents was at 571, an increase of 6 percent from the year prior. There were 276 injury accidents in 2015, which is a 2 percent decrease from 2014. In 2015, Turlock saw two fatalities from traffic collisions, which is a 75 percent decrease from the year prior.

The majority of the collisions were a result of right of way violations, according to the Turlock Police Department’s statistics. There were 92 right of way violations cited in traffic collision reports, followed by 88 unsafe turning movements, and 85 unsafe speed citations.

Earlier this year the City’s Engineering Department implemented the Collision Reduction Strategy, which utilizes education, encouragement, evaluation, and enforcement tactics to reduce the rate of collisions. As part of the strategy the department is identifying unsafe driving habits and trends around town and presenting that information to driving instructors at the schools to address the problems before they become a set habit for new drivers.

While all aspects of traffic safety will be reviewed and discussed at the workshop, a particular focus will be made on collisions between motorists and non-motorized users, such a bicyclists and pedestrians.

The workshop will be conducted in English, but Spanish interpretation services are available if requested at least one week in advance of the meeting.  The City is committed to equal access to all residents, so individuals with disabilities that require special accommodation are encouraged to contact the City as soon as possible. 

The workshop will be held in the Yosemite Conference Room at Turlock City Hall, 156 S. Broadway, 2nd Floor.

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