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Opinion

Letters to the Editor: Letter to the Editor: It’s not just texting while driving that’s causing Glendale’s traffic accidents

A safety banner warns drivers to not text and drive, as seen on the bridge over Verdugo Road at Glen
A banner on the bridge over Verdugo Road at Glendale Community College in 2017 warns drivers to not text and drive. A reader writes to say that texting is not the only cause of traffic accidents in the city..
(Raul Roa / Glendale News-Press)

We must not value our grandpa’s life because we keep texting and driving despite warning signs that the pedestrian could be your grandpa. The Glendale Walks campaign seeks to increase pedestrian activity by asking “How can we make our streets safer for seniors?” Glendale is among the safest cities in the U.S., yet it has a higher rate of senior accidents than the national average. What causes this discrepancy?

Knowing the root causes of pedestrian accidents is essential. Driving under the influence is the No. 1 cause of accidents. There are already laws against drinking or texting while driving, but no policies against pollution, clogged streets and rapid development.

A 2016 study by the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science links pollution levels to an increase in motor vehicle collisions. Traffic has been increasing in Glendale. Not only are there a lot of freeways that run through Glendale, but even the surface streets have become so crowded they feel like freeways. Surely, the amount of traffic going through the city creates a lot of air pollution.

The rate at which high-rise buildings are being built has not triggered any improvements in transportation infrastructure. More buildings mean a larger population, but new roads are not being built, nor are there additional investments in public transportation or the creation of green spaces to combat pollution.

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What’s the rationale behind all of these buildings? Reducing development should reduce pollution, traffic and the number of pedestrian collisions resulting from them.

When we’re looking at the causes of accidents in Glendale, we have to look beyond texting.

Rachel Melikian

Glendale

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