A New Approach to Speeding Can Save Lives

The mayors of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Oakland, and San Jose all agree: Speeding kills, and it’s time we had the tools and programs to address this problem systemically.

Your San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is proud to support Assemblymember David Chiu’s Assembly Bill 550 (AB 550), which seeks to develop, authorize, and implement speed safety systems. These systems will create alternatives to traditional speed enforcement —  enforcement that we know isn’t effective and has had disparate impact on communities of color.

On March 16, we joined Assemblymember Chiu, Mayor London Breed, Supervisor Aaron Peskin, and BART Board Director Lateefah Simon to announce this bill, which also has the support of the mayors of Los Angeles, Oakland, and San Jose. Jenny Yu and Gina LaBlanc, two Bay Area residents who have had their lives tragically impacted by speeding drivers, both spoke as members of Bay Area Families for Safe Streets, a group made up of traffic crash survivors and loved ones of people who have been killed or injured in traffic crashes.

“We need AB 550 to save lives,” said Jenny Yu, whose mother was struck by a speeding driver at Park Presidio and Anza streets in the Richmond District in 2011. Jenny’s mother has never been the same since and she requires around-the-clock care from her family. “Daily, we try to hold on,” Jenny said through tears. “Speed detection systems are a powerful tool we deserve to have here in California to prevent so many deaths and so much suffering.”

This bill will first create a stakeholder working group to create program guidelines of what these speed safety systems will look like, ensuring that equity concerns are met. It is imperative that we create a program that is not administered by police and does not lead to criminal citations, because any speed safety system must be focused on behavior change and compliance with speed limits. Once the program guidelines are developed, the bill then further authorizes the implementation of these systems.

At the end of the day, this bill is all about saving lives. “These deaths are completely, utterly preventable,” says Assemblymember David Chiu.

Now, the real campaign begins to make sure this bill passes through the state legislature and we know it’s going to take people power across California to win. Join our campaign today to receive updates and be involved today.

I Support AB 550

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