The problem that we are facing is the deadly intersection of H Street an Laurel Avenue. This intersection is dangerous to us all because it has no stop light. According to a summary of Lompoc City Police reports filed within the last 14 months, there have been 19 collisions at the corner of H Street and Laurel Avenue. Of these, 19 collisions, 11 were attributed to the failure of East/West Laurel Avenue traffic to stop at H Street. The remaining 8 accidents were attributed to motorist traveling North and South on H Street, striking cars in the rear that had just turned on to H street from Laurel Avenue.
An analysis of Lompoc traffic accidents was prepared by Mr. J. T. Brown of the California Department of Motor Vehicles Mishap Investigation Division, and published February 22nd,1996. In this analysis, the underlying cause of these specific 19 traffic accidents was listed as the lack of adequate traffic control at the intersection of H Street and Laurel Avenue. The analysis further went on to site the installation of a traffic signal as the recommended solution.
I have copies of both the Summary of Lompoc City Police reports and Mr. Brown’s analysis If you would care to review them for yourself later. Well, now that we’ve examined the nature of the threat we are facing lets take a look at what has been done so far t defend against this threat.
II. Debate by city officials and increased patrols by law enforcement have not solved the problem.
The Lompoc City Council has debated installing a traffic signal. During the last two City Council meetings held in January and February of this year, the council acknowledged the need for a traffic signal but concluded that the cost of $127,000.00 would take away from funds needed for other city projects.
Police increased patrol of this dangerous area from October to December of 1996. 6 of the 19 accidents occurred during this three month period. Police can not be permanently assigned to observe one intersection…. Manning just won’t permit that.
According to Patrolman Danny Glover, a Lompoc City Policeman who was involved in the additional patrol of the H Street and Laurel Avenue intersection area (and I quote) “While Police were present and visible, people were normally more careful, but when no police were present it was business as usual.” So we’ve taken a look at what has been done so far, now lets look at what we can do to further protect ourselves.
III. In order to protect ourselves and those we love, we can drive defensively, but most importantly, we must demand a traffic light be installed without further delay.
Driving defensively is always a good idea. Just being aware of a dangerous situation will naturally make us more alert. The more attentive we are anywhere, but particularly at this dangerous intersection, the more apt we are to avoid an accident. but driving defensively is just not enough. We must have that traffic signal and we must have it NOW!!!
When we get this traffic signal installed we will all be safer. Tragedies will be prevented. The city council must hear our voices. Remember, 27 people have already been seriously injured and 4 have died at this intersection. $127,000.00 may be a lot of money but can we afford not to spend it on a traffic signal for the intersection of Laurel Avenue and H Street? How long will it be before you and I are one of those accident victims? How often do you use this Intersection? Will you use this intersection tonight when you leave class? We can’t wait any longer !!!!!
If we do not act now and demand the installation of this traffic signal then we will be contributing to the injuries and deaths and pain to surviving families because of our lack of action. We must act now!!
The next City Council meeting will be held April 12th, next Thursday at 7:00 p.m.. The agenda includes comments and a call to vote on this traffic signal issue. The more of us who attend that council meeting and support immediate installation of a traffic signal, the better the chance we will have of getting it.
Ladies and Gentlemen, attend that meeting with me and with me, demand this traffic signal be installed immediately!!!
Well, tonight we took a look at the nature of a serious problem we are all facing. The Intersection of Laurel Avenue and H Street is a disaster waiting to happen to you and me and those we love. Remember the two separate documents which point to the lack of a traffic signal at this dangerous intersection as a prime contributing factor in the accidents which occurred there.
Remember the 27 injured and 4 who were killed there, not one block from where we are right now. Then we discussed what has been done so far by both city officials and law enforcement to deal with this problem.
We saw that the City Council has been debating installing a traffic signal. We saw that the Police Department tried increased patrol of the area. But remember the words of Patrolman Glover, when he said that as soon as police were not immediately present it was business as usual.
And finally, We looked at what we can do to further protect ourselves from the threat posed by the serious problem of no traffic signal at the corner of H Street and Laurel Avenue.
Remember, driving defensively is always a good idea. But most importantly, we saw that the immediate installation of a traffic signal is our best defense against this threat and we need to let our City Council know that we can’t wait any longer.
2. Purpose Statement:
So, ladies and gentlemen, now you have the information that can literally save your life. And so the time for action is here. I urge you to go to the City Council meeting with me next Thursday at 7:00 p.m. and demand a traffic signal be installed at the intersection of Laurel Avenue and H Street immediately!!!
If you need a ride to the meeting or if you have any questions, see me after class. I’ll be happy to talk with you.
Courtney from Study Moose
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