SFPD step up efforts to make streets safer for cyclists and pedestrians

San Francisco police stepped up traffic enforcement today, part of an ongoing effort to make the streets safer for cyclists and pedestrians.

The city of San Francisco is five years into the 10 year Vision Zero effort. We're looking at what the city has learned and what it's doing to protect pedestrians and cyclists.

San Francisco motorcycle units were out in force looking for drivers who were speeding blowing through red lights or stop signs or making illegal turns with an eye out for drivers who don't yield to pedestrians.

"We are out there catching the criminals and catching the bad guys" said Adam Lobsinger from the San Francisco Police Department.  "But we're also trying to protect our public. And we think that traffic enforcement is one way to protect the public."

San Francisco launched its Vision Zero campaign in 2014 aimed at bringing the city's pedestrian and cyclist fatalities down to zero by the year 2024.

Five years into Vision Zero the number of pedestrian and cyclists deaths has generally trended down from 24 to a low of 16 in 2017. 18 people died on city streets last year and with the deadly collision last Wednesday morning 12 pedestrians and cyclists have died this year so far. "We're at about 12 fatalities so far this year," said Paul Rose from the SFMTA. "And, we feel that one death is too many when you're trying to travel from point A to point B."

The city says it is using the data about where and how these deadly collisions occur and will be using the data gathered over the last five years to look at reducing pedestrian deaths in the next five years.

"Because we know that 75% of all our injury collisions are on 13% of our streets we are working together to focus all of our resources in those high injury networks. So that's where we go from here to continue working in those areas," said Rose.

The city says even with more than 3/4 of a million people, cyclists, commuters, ride-share drivers, and delivery personnel; trying to achieve zero deaths might seem like an impossible task-- but one which the city should strive toward.

"It's an ambitious goal, but it's the right goal to have," said Rose. "And we have to do everything we can to get to that number. We think we can do it if we put forth the right engineering, the right awareness, the right enforcement. We can get our numbers to zero."

Police did not provide figures on how many divers were cited in Monday's efforts. San Francisco police will be out again next week with another special enforcement effort.