Woman hit by truck is taken off life support

GLENDALE — A 70-year-old Glendale woman who was struck by a refrigerated delivery truck after stepping off a curb died late Wednesday, officials said.

Tonya Kisishvili is the first pedestrian to be killed this year in a traffic-related collision on Glendale streets.

“This is an unfortunate event we wish wouldn’t have happened,” Glendale Police Sgt. Dennis Smith said.

Kisishvili had swelling in her brain and was in a coma at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center before she was taken off life support, police said.

Kisishvili’s family declined to comment Thursday about her death and the collision.

She was taken to the hospital Tuesday after the collision on Central and California avenues.

The truck was traveling south on Central Avenue about 2:40 p.m. in the second lane as it approached the intersection at California Avenue at about 25 mph, police said.

Witnesses told police that Kisishvili didn’t look before stepping off the curb against a red light on Central when the truck struck her.

Kisishvili was launched several feet before landing in the intersection, police said.

The truck driver wasn’t injured and immediately stopped at the scene.

The crash remains under investigation, Smith said.

An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of Kisishvili’s death, he added.

Smith said her death is a reminder of “the dangers of crossing the roadway” and the need for pedestrians to be careful when they enter a street.

For several years, police and city officials have struggled to put a dent in the number of pedestrian-involved collisions.

Glendale has been consistently ranked among similarly sized cities as having one of worst records in collisions involving pedestrians 65 and older, according to the California Office of Traffic Safety.

To improve Glendale’s road safety record, police stepped up enforcement efforts and issued more than 1,500 pedestrian-related citations in 2009, according to a city report released last year.

In July, the Police Department was awarded a $200,000 grant to expand its pedestrian education efforts, as well as step up speed and distracted driving enforcement.

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