Protestors call for more Vision Zero safety measures at site of fatal SF pedestrian crash

Dozens of people in San Francisco stood at the intersection of 16th Street and Potrero in San Francisco holding signs at the bus stop where a person died Tuesday after being hit by a stolen vehicle.

"We're here today because a pedestrian was killed on 16th Street," said one protestor who had a megaphone and briefly stopped traffic as they held up their signs.

They reminded drivers this was the spot where one person died Tuesday, after a carjacking suspect crashed into another vehicle and hit bystanders, killing one person and injuring three others.


Bystander killed after San Francisco carjacking suspect crashes during police chase

A bystander was killed, and several others were hurt, after an alleged carjacking suspect slammed into a bus stop during a police chase in San Francisco on Tuesday morning.

"I was appalled. It could have been any of us waiting for the bus," said Kat Siegal is a member of Safe Street Rebel, a group that organized the demonstration in memory of Tuesday's victim and called on the city for change.

Siegal says there have been other crashes nearby, and the area doesn't feel safe for pedestrians.

"We've actually had two other fatalities this calendar year, one on 16th and one on Portrero," said Siegal. 

Some of the protestors say they put some blame on law enforcement officers for pursuing the suspect, Carlo Watson, 57, who is in jail booked on 19 charges including carjacking, reckless driving, murder, vehicle manslaughter, and driving without a license.

Neighbors say they want the city's Vision Zero program, which aims to have zero traffic deaths by the year 2024, to consider making more changes to this spot where the speed limit is 25 miles an hour, but cars often drive much faster.

"Sometimes, 30, 40, 50," said Scott Feeney, a neighbor who lives five blocks from the spot, "Even when there isn't a carjacking, it's just a dangerous intersection."

"The sheer width of the street allows cars to get going really fast, going speeds that really aren't appropriate for a busy city street with a lot of pedestrians and bus riders," said Feeney.

According to the Vision Zero website, there were 37 traffic fatalities in 2022 and six deaths in 2023 prior to Tuesday's fatal crash.

An SFMTA spokesperson says just this past year, the Vision Zero team did widen the sidewalk at the 16th Street bus stop. Protestors say they hope the city will take other steps such as adding more protected bike lanes and pedestrian "bulbouts" for better visibility.