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Goleta Police Cite 13 Motorists During Crosswalk Sting

Officers target three locations to watch for drivers failing to yield to pedestrians

Goleta police cited 13 motorists on Thursday for not yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks at three locations in Goleta.

The Goleta Traffic Unit conducted a pedestrian crosswalk sting operation from 10:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Calle Real at Kinston Avenue, at Hollister Avenue at Chapel Street and in the 5700 block of Hollister Avenue in front of the Goleta Valley Community Center. As a plainclothes deputy used the crosswalk, uniformed motorcycle deputies watched for motorists who did not yield the right-of-way to the pedestrian in the crosswalk, according to Sheriff’s Department spokesman Drew Sugars.

“Public safety is a priority in Goleta. By using sting operations, we can continue to educate the public on safe driving techniques,” Vyto Adomaitis, Goleta’s public safety director, said in a news release. “Our police department has done an outstanding job in keeping our neighborhoods safe.”

The locations were selected based on the volume of vehicle traffic, pedestrian traffic and citizen complaints.

“Thankfully, the majority of the motorists observed during this operation properly and safely yielded to the pedestrian in the crosswalk,” said Sgt. Kevin Huddle, the Goleta Traffic Unit supervisor.

Sugars said police hope that by conducting such operations on a regular basis, motorists will be more attentive and look for pedestrians.

Deputies focused on two specific vehicle code infractions, Sugars said. The first requires drivers to yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection. The fine for that violation can be up to $175.

The second law prohibits vehicles from passing a vehicle that has stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross the street. This offense is especially dangerous because pedestrians are all too often lulled into a false sense of security when a vehicle stops for them. The fine for this violation is about $400.

Noozhawk managing editor Michelle Nelson can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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