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Police data shows 2018's most dangerous intersections

Original post made on Aug 14, 2018

In a bid to increase transparency and communication about traffic safety, the Mountain View Police Department announced plans last week to regularly release data on all collisions occurring throughout the city.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, August 14, 2018, 4:00 PM

Comments (23)

Posted by lan
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Aug 14, 2018 at 4:51 pm

lan is a registered user.

"We, and other residents, do not tolerate violations that can and do hurt others, so please, be cordial, be patient and be safe."

This is not true. Is not the experience of many who live in Mountain View and witness year after year red light runners on Grant Road, Rengstorff and Shoreline. People have complained, yet little if anything has been done to fix the problem.

My new expectation when driving through Mountain View is for drivers to not pay attention to the rules of the road. And to expect no enforcement.

Posted by ? For MVPD
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Aug 14, 2018 at 5:14 pm

Knowing that the 237 and ECR intersection is the MOST dangerous area for the public to drive through, why, check that, _WHY_ haven't we seen designated cops there all the damn time?!?! Rush hour? YES! School commute? YES! Lunch rush? YES! Late night? YES!

Put a WORKING cop or two out there until people have the fear of god that if they blink wrong, they'll get a ticket. There should always be a cop writing a ticket and another one at the ready would be better. People learned they can blow those stoplights because YOU taught them there will be no repercussions. Sane drivers with kids say it's time to clean up your mess.

Do you have any other ideas MVPD? Whoever is making the call, we would love to her them, if you can step from behind your spokesperson and tell us.

Posted by Jim in MV
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Aug 15, 2018 at 7:41 am

The "Most Dangerous Intersection" is not the one with the most accidents. It is the one with the most accidents PER VEHICLE. Given the very high traffic at 237/Grant/El Camino it is hardly surprising that it has the most accidents.

How about a study that takes the traffic into account.

Posted by Kevin Forestieri
Mountain View Voice Staff Writer
on Aug 15, 2018 at 9:05 am

Kevin Forestieri is a registered user.

@Jim in MV

You might be surprised how few intersections break from the usual pattern. Among intersections with at least three collisions this year, the only one that doesn't lie on one of the city's major roadways (i.e. California Street, Central Expressway) is San Pierre Way and Montecito Avenue with three crashes. All three occurred within a few days of each other in January, oddly enough.

Going back to the beginning of 2017, Cuesta Drive & Miramonte Avenue and Independence Avenue & Charleston Road come up with six crashes, which breaks away from the usual pattern, but at this point we're talking about more than 1100 collisions across 350+ different city intersections.

The only caveat I'd throw in is that readers have suggested in the past that some vehicle collisions go unreported. How many is anyone's guess.

Posted by Resident
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:40 am

I commute daily through the 237/ECR intersection, and it's positively nuts. People turning right from 237 to ECR are ruthless - the lines get long, and some people force their way into the head of the line, people who waited don't want to yield, and bang, minor collision. Red lights on left turns are run constantly, 3-4 cars enter the intersection after it turns red.

Put an officer there occasionally, in a visible spot. It'll make people behave. They know they're not supposed to do this, but this being the bay area, and everyone knowing that they're more important than everyone else, a lot of this happens.

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood

on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:49 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

Posted by Oedipus McGillicuddy
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 1:14 pm

Why doesn't this article contain a link to the police data that it's describing?

This article is a web page. Web pages are written in HTML, which has always allowed you to create links to other web sites.

This article is literally about the fact that the city has posted some information on its own web site.

So why doesn't this article contain a link to that information?

Here is the city press release, which contains a link to the data:
Web Link

And here is the actual data:
Web Link

Posted by speed traps middle of day, useless
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Aug 15, 2018 at 2:43 pm

speed traps middle of day, useless is a registered user.

Recently on two different days, noticed motorcycle officer (speed trap) across from Sylvan Park, first time in the mid-morning, 2nd time around 2pm, essentially the least busy times of day. I asked him why they are not out there at commute hours when speeding is commonplace and a danger to residents, he said they only have officers available for this type of duty until 5pm, andonly a few officers were available for speed surveillance; seriously? Nice guy and no doubt it was true, but seriously? If I need to call 911 (hopefully never), I hope I am not told "nobody is available outside of regular business hours, call tomorrow after 9am."

Posted by Clark
a resident of Shoreline West
on Aug 15, 2018 at 3:09 pm

Clark is a registered user.

The Bike friendly street project for Latham is taking way too long I believe it's going on 3 years now? This is not acceptable when a building permit and environmental study take months. Cyclists using El Camino or California are taking their life into their own hands. It's crazy what I see on Latham especially during the school season. It shouldn't take someone getting seriously injured or worse for change to happen. Come on Mt. View, you can do better.

Posted by where are the police?
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Aug 15, 2018 at 3:50 pm

It has been months since I have seen a patrol officer pull someone over. Double parkers, red light runners, california stoppers and speeders are some of the people I encounter with everyday driving thru Mountain View. It's getting annoying that the police department seems to not even have a traffic enforcement. And it's only going to get worse as time goes on. My message to the police, "If you seem an infraction, write them up, don't let it become the norm."

Posted by Sherry
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Aug 15, 2018 at 5:24 pm

@ Where are the police?

Perhaps you should sign up for Nextdoor or look at the department's Facebook page or Twitter page, all are open to the public. They post about their enforcement regularly.

Posted by Nora S.
a resident of Rex Manor
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:35 pm

@ Kevin Forestieri

Thanks for the article and your follow-up comment.

The data just released looks like April-June only. How can we get access to earlier compilations of traffic collisions?

Also, what does "UNKNOWN PRIMARY COLLISION" mean in the list of accidents?

Posted by Seriously?
a resident of Martens-Carmelita
on Aug 15, 2018 at 6:47 pm

If 237, Grant and ECR is so dangerous, I wish MVPD would rid this intersection of all the panhandlers that cause such a distraction at these traffic lights.

Posted by Kevin Forestieri
Mountain View Voice Staff Writer
on Aug 15, 2018 at 9:34 pm

Kevin Forestieri is a registered user.

@Nora S.

The 2017 collision data can be found on the city's website (link below), though I'm not sure why they make it so hard to find. It's nested like six links deep under the public works department.

Web Link

You may notice the Q1 2018 link on that page doesn't actually take you to the full list of traffic incidents. For whatever reason the city replaced it with a simplified spreadsheet showing just bike and pedestrian collisions. The full list is still available through the link below:

Web Link

As to your last question, UNKNOWN PRIMARY COLLISION, as best I understand it, simply means the officer couldn't determine what specific vehicle code violation caused the crash.

Posted by Dangerous Conditions
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Aug 15, 2018 at 10:15 pm

Several months ago, I spoke to city council about this issue - how dangerous the streets of Mountain View seemed to have become, and how I had become genuinely fearful every day as a pedestrian and when in a vehicle. I recounted details of having been struck while at a complete stop behind other vehicles, in broad daylight...not once but TWICE, in the span of 13 months. In the first collision I was struck by a vehicle traveling at 35+ MPH.

What finally broke me was when I was nearly struck by a car heading NORTHBOUND in the SOUTHBOUND lane of Miramonte at El Camino Real (the wrong side of a divided road!) which then CROSSED El Camino Real as I was making a left hand turn - from the Northbound left hand turn lane of Miramonte onto Westbound El Camino Real. The car came out of nowhere, in broad daylight, traveling the WRONG DIRECTION & AGAINST A LIGHT, AND NEARLY KILLED ME.

I was apoplectic. I was on my way to treatment for injuries I received from the previous collision, and I can't even make it to that appointment safely...which just involved traveling on city streets. That made THREE times in 13 months, and I have lived here 25 years and NEVER had any type of traffic incident prior to the previous 13 months.


And THAT was the gist of my commentary to city council, informing them of what I believe is a huge and dangerous problem, and begging them for help...more enforcement, better signage around construction zones, anything and everything they can do to make conditions safer for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers alike. The way things are now is quite simply dangerous conditions.

I am truly fearful everyday when I leave my home now, walking, doesnt matter.

Posted by Concerned
a resident of Blossom Valley
on Aug 16, 2018 at 3:17 pm

Why can't we install red light cameras at Grant/El Camino/237? As others have mentioned, people regularly run red lights there (particularly people making left turns from El Camino onto Grant--usually two or three cars every single time I'm at that intersection). The chance of killing someone doesn't seem to deter these drivers, but maybe a hefty fine would.

Posted by Sophie
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Aug 16, 2018 at 4:41 pm

In quite a few occasions, I felt the drivers either didn’t know the road and had to constantly check the GPS/smart phone, or the drivers didn’t know the basic rules, such as stop at stop sign, stop at red light. It’s interesting to know how the latter drivers are qualified to drive.

Posted by dc
a resident of Sylvan Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 7:58 pm

2018's most dangerous intersection? I call fake new title

Posted by Jim in MV

The "Most Dangerous Intersection" is not the one with the most accidents. It is the one with the most accidents PER VEHICLE. Given the very high traffic at 237/Grant/El Camino it is hardly surprising that it has the most accidents.

How about a study that takes the traffic into account.

Posted by Michael
a resident of Jackson Park
on Aug 16, 2018 at 9:34 pm

In the late 1970/early 1980s, I lived in Houston. It just became the 4th largest city but only had a highway system the size of Indianapolis. Traffic was so bad that people (mostly in pickup trucks) would leave the highway backups by driving off the freeway and over the berms. It was common for people to run red lights, and some would tailgate a red light runner to run it even later. I had a "count to three" rule when the traffic light turned green. Things got a little better when the city raised the fine to $475 (that is over $1,500 adjusted for inflation)

In Mountain View, I have started using my "count to three" rule again.

Posted by Robyn
a resident of another community
on Aug 17, 2018 at 9:59 am

The term "speed trap" is for areas of the roadways for which there are no current speed surveys. The fact that officers are present at problematic areas does not make it a speed trap.

Posted by Neighbor
a resident of North Whisman
on Aug 17, 2018 at 4:20 pm

All these locations mark areas where people like to run the red light and/or block intersections and crossing know that the fact that even though the light is about to turn red, I have to right to complete my turn at the expense of blocking the intersection. These drivers are often the ignorant ones and don't even look at you after you honk your horn at them furiously letting them know that what they're doing is not acceptable (horse with blinders effect).

Happens all the time when I go to work on and get to the intersection of W. Moffet Park Dr./ North Mathilda Ave. intersections. People are just ignorant and downright selfish with no common sense. Everyone has lost their patience and disciple as a driver. They are taking advantage at the expense of the other driver that now has the green light but cannot proceed through the intersection because the route is now being blocked. Is the intersection on Middlefield Rd./Shoreline still being blocked by workers headed into Google especially on Wednesdays when most of these drivers are rushing into work to join their weekly all-hands meetings?

I'd like to bet that a majority of these drivers are probably non-Mountain View residents and are out-of-towners. That I don't doubt at all.

I wonder how much of the majority are also driving cars with the Uber/Lyft stickers on the back window. That would be nice to find out as well.

My son has been pestering us for years asking if he can walk/ride/skateboard to school but when I often remind him of the dangers of that same intersection, it scares me after seeing how people drive through there. People just don't know how to share the road. In case they haven't noticed, Mountain View has many bicyclists from all ages and people that love pets. Bikes and dogs.

Posted by Uh...
a resident of Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Aug 17, 2018 at 4:32 pm

"don't even look at you after you honk your horn at them furiously letting them know that what they're doing is not acceptable"

That's the exact type of road rage behavior all the cops advise people to ignore; to not even look over at or acknowledge. You needed satisfaction though. After they look at you, then what? You get to flip them off? Feel better?

So think about this. Once the idiot made his move, did another idiot compound the issue for all others on the road and escalate the frustration level for all? Take a very deep breath next time...if you have a strong enough ego to do so. Your driving needs fixing.

Posted by Neighbor
a resident of North Whisman
on Aug 17, 2018 at 6:57 pm


Tell me you don't do the same?

You need to tell people that what they're doing is wrong on the road. Are you going to just turn the cheek and allow drivers like this to carry on?

If you don't tell them whatsup then they'll do it again over and over and over again- if you're one of them then I'll tell you whatsup too. How can someone learn if you don't give them conviction? You must be one of those drivers that don't honk your horn at the car in front of you if they've been sittling idle and not paying attention to the light that has just turned green. Honk at them to get them going- SMH

I don't have road rage and I'm the best defensive driver in town. I can top your driving skills 1000x over any given day.

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