LA City Council looks into installing speed humps near all public schools

The Los Angeles City Council has taken another step toward installing speed humps at every public school in Los Angeles, instructing the city’s transportation department to report back on how feasible the goal is, including the funding and staffing needs and a timeline to complete the work.

The council’s 11-0 vote on Wednesday, May 10, follows two vehicular collisions near schools in April. In one incident, a mom was killed, and her 6-year-old daughter critically injured when a car hit them outside Hancock Park Elementary. In the other incident, a 14-year-old student was struck by a car near Berendo Middle School.

Council President Paul Krekorian had called for a citywide school speed hump program that would expand a pilot program underway in his San Fernando Valley district, which stretches from Sun Valley to Toluca Lake and includes North Hollywood.

Krekorian started the pilot program to install humps at all LAUSD elementary schools in Council District 2 by the start of the next school year in August. Speed humps are installed on an annual cycle that has drawn fierce competition. People apply to the city for humps, but the window closes once the city gets 375 requests – and that happens within just minutes, according to Krekorian’s office.

“Since the City’s Speed Hump Program began, competition among neighborhoods has increased,” Krekorian said in a statement Thursday. “Additionally, there is growing interest from elementary schools that would like to utilize this critical traffic safety tool. To ensure the safety of children and the surrounding school communities, the City should establish a dedicated speed hump program for elementary schools.”

Before Wednesday’s council vote, the motion was amended to include all public schools, not just elementary campuses, according to the council president’s office.

Krekorian used District 2 funds to pay for the pilot program in neighborhoods he represents.

Since then, he has asked that funding be expanded citywide in the city’s upcoming fiscal year’s budget, now under review by the City Council. The council has until the end of May to send a budget to the mayor for her signature.

Traffic safety near schools has been a prominent topic, especially since the accidents near campuses last month.

Officials from the city and Los Angeles Unified School District have also talked about expediting the hiring of more school crossing guards.

“Traffic-related violence and death cannot be the status quo,” Councilmember Heather Hutt, who chairs the council’s Transportation Committee and is one of two councilmembers to second Krekorian’s motion, said last month.

“No one else should have to lose someone they love while they’re trying to get to school,” Hutt added. “We can’t allow this to happen again.”

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