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A family seeks answers after fatal collision on Union Avenue; Caltrans announces plans for improvements | News

A family is looking for answers after a deadly collision on a road that has had more than two dozen fatal accidents in the last two years.

Raven Mora, 30, was riding his bicycle on South Union Avenue at around 2:52 a.m. on March 7 when a vehicle struck him and killed him on the spot, according to the Kern County Court Office. The driver fled, according to California Highway Patrol agents who are still trying to determine the identity of the suspect.

City and state officials expect these types of collisions to be less likely as a result of plans to improve safety on Union Avenue, which was unveiled to Bakersfield City Council on Wednesday by Road Department officials in charge of road transportation.

Meanwhile, Mora’s relatives are left to deal with the loss of a family member, while they ask for the help of the community to find out what happened.

“He had a great personality,” said Caroline Prado, a family member, and asked anyone who had information to please. “Anyone who knew him liked to talk to him.”

Officer Robert Rodriguez, a spokesman for the Bakersfield CHP office, said an investigation into the crash was underway.

“CHP is looking for ways to find a suspect,” he added.

Concerns about Union Avenue

Bakersfield Police Department officials are aware of concerns about Union Avenue guarding the area.

Union Avenue has seen the most collisions on the streets patrolling the department, according to the sergeant. Robert Pair, BPD spokesman. The road is heavily used by pedestrians at all hours of the day, which could increase the risk of the road, he added. Operations like jaywalking enforcement has made people to let people do not walk in traffic, Pair said.

At a press conference in December, local officials pushing for state road safety improvements, Bakersfield City Councilman Bob Smith said there had been 28 traffic-related deaths in the Union in the past two years, but no state investment, according to the previous one. report The Californian.

Smith, the council’s Ward 4 representative, is chairman of the regional transportation coordinator, Kern Governing Council. At the time, Smith also said concerns about collisions are part of the reason he avoids the street when cycling.

However, a Caltrans official said several improvements to the road were planned. The agency announced plans to create additional space for non-motorists at a presentation at City Hall on Wednesday.

Rail changes, other safety improvements

The changes discussed in Caltrans’ presentation could not have happened quickly enough for some.

“Finally, (Caltrans) is acting on the urgency of this situation,” City Councilman Eric Arias said in a telephone interview with The Californian on Friday, which includes sections on Ward 1 Union Avenue. Arias added that Caltrans was quick to respond to a December press conference with Smith, Councilwoman Andrae Gonzales and regional head Leticia Perez, where they asked the agency to renovate Union Avenue.

Christian Lukens, head of public information at Caltrans, said several initiatives were presented at Wednesday’s meeting.

Lukens said Union Avenue will be renovated by removing a lane for walking in each direction between Brundage Lane and 12th Street, slowing down traffic and allowing pedestrians to cross fewer lanes.

The plan also explained the disadvantages of reducing a lane, including increased congestion or possible accidents caused by congestion, fewer gaps in access to or crossing the highway, and difficulty in retrieving a future lane, if necessary, according to Lukens.

Caltrans is also considering adding a “wide buffer area similar to a bike path but similar to a bike path but elevated physical element, in this case a pipeline, to improve safety,” also on Brundage Lane and 12th Street, Luke said. . The council’s presentation also stated that innovations are being built for 2023.

Lukens added that Caltrans and the city of Bakersfield have held several meetings in recent months and “will continue to work together to determine the appropriate improvements and how they will be implemented.

“Caltrans aims to adapt all modes of transport and the safety of the most vulnerable road users, including pedestrians and cyclists,” he added.

The other two projects include a hybrid pedestrian beacon on Golden State Avenue at 8th Street and a renovation of the slopes along Golden State Avenue.

City officials are approving improvements that could help make Union Avenue safer.

“The tragedy on Union Avenue … happened too often,” Arias said. “It simply came to our notice then.

“I don’t think (these projects) will come fast enough,” Arias added.

Anyone with information about the March 7 coup escape can contact the CHP Bakersfield office at 661-396-6600.

You can contact Ishani Desai at 661-395-7417. You can also follow him on Twitter at @ idesai98.

A family seeks answers after fatal collision on Union Avenue; Caltrans announces plans for improvements | News Source link A family seeks answers after fatal collision on Union Avenue; Caltrans announces plans for improvements | News

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