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Pedestrian crashes down, officials say

November 27, 2002

Ben Godar

Despite a recent pedestrian collision, traffic officials said the

number of road deaths is actually down in Glendale.

Actress Frances Bay remained in critical condition at County USC

Hospital late Tuesday, after being struck by a car Thursday night

while crossing Brand Boulevard. Bay has appeared in such films as

"Happy Gilmore" and "The Wedding Planner."

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To decrease the number of pedestrian collisions, the city has

installed several in-pavement lighting systems at crosswalks not

controlled by a stop light or sign. At those crosswalks, more than

90% of drivers slow down when a pedestrian is present, Traffic and

Transportation Administrator Jano Baghdanian said. That is

significantly better than at crosswalks where lights are not present.

The crosswalk where Bay was hit, between California Avenue and

Lexington Drive, did not have in-pavement lights. They will be

installed at the intersection next year, as part of the Brand

improvements, Baghdanian said.

Most of the existing in-pavement lights have been installed along

South Brand and South Glendale Avenue. Those intersections have

historically had the highest number of pedestrian collisions,

Baghdanian said.

The existing lights have already helped decrease the number of

deadly collisions, Glendale Police Lt. Don Meredith said. There have

been only two traffic-related deaths in Glendale thus far in 2002,

down from nine last year and 14 the year before.

"For a city as large as Glendale is, that's remarkable," he said.

Both of the deaths involved pedestrian crashes.

In addition to the crosswalk lights, Meredith said police have

targeted intersections that were "collision-prone" as a way to reduce

deaths. Police are paying particular attention to aggressive drivers.

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