The introduction of the Local Roadway Safety Plan for the County of San Diego was an information item rather than a voting item at the September 11 meeting of the county’s Traffic Advisory Committee, although data and potential recommendations will return to the TAC in the near future.
“It’s very much conceptual at this point,” said Ben Baker, an engineering technician for the county’s Department of Public Works (DPW).
The Local Roadway Safety Plan will allow the county a framework for organizing stakeholders to identify, analyze, and prioritize roadway safety improvements on county-maintained roads. The LRSP will focus on identifying crash problems and roadway risk factors and providing potential countermeasures. The plan will also be a critical component in the county’s attempt to obtain grant funding.
LLG Engineering is analyzing the county’s traffic collision data between January 1, 2015, and December 31, 2019. “We will look at all collisions in the last five years,” said K.C. Yellapu of LLG Engineering. “We will look at this data and we will figure out any patterns.”
During the five-year period 16,245 collisions were reported on roads under jurisdiction of the county.
The TAC reviews requests for regulatory measures such as speed limits, stop controls, and traffic signals. Any regulatory matters must be ratified by the San Diego County Board of Supervisors. If a road design or other non-regulatory solution is recommended Board of Supervisors approval is needed only for a construction contract exceeding the amount DPW can spend without a Board of Supervisors action. The TAC is part of DPW.
The TAC includes representatives from the California Highway Patrol’s Oceanside, El Cajon, and Border stations and also includes representatives from the California Department of Transportation, the Sheriff’s Department, DPW, the San Diego County Regional Fire Authority, the San Diego County Office of Education, the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, the San Diego Safety Council, Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of San Diego, a public member representing the Second Supervisorial District, and a public member representing the Third District and Fifth District. “You have industry specialists on the committee, you have law enforcement,” said TAC secretary Kenton Jones. “We can probably provide some input.”
LLG Engineering will work with the TAC to evaluate the findings and make recommendations for an integrated approach. “We want to make sure that this document actually helps reduce the crashes,” Yellapu said.
The next TAC meeting will be held October 23. “At that meeting we will be presenting collision trend analyses, we will be presenting our findings,” Yellapu said.
A draft LRSP including recommendations will be presented at the December 11 TAC meeting, although the TAC review will not necessarily include a recommendation for adoption on that date.
“I would really like that (DPW’s division of) Traffic Engineering reach out to the community,” Jones said. “I just don’t want it to be a surprise to the community.”
Jones indicated the possibility of a workshopfocusing on the LRSP. “That might be beneficial,” he said.
Yellapu also noted that community input will be part of the final LRSP. “We also want to discuss recommendations with the community at large. It’s going to be a while before we finalize that,” he said.