Larry Block Takes Crosswalk Safety Campaign to the Streets

cross safe weho
Cross Safe WeHo poster

Larry Block has taken his Cross Safe WeHo campaign to the streets, fastening signs on poles along sidewalks that warn pedestrians to look both ways before crossing the street.

Block walked up and down Santa Monica Boulevard and other streets today putting up the signs, which technically aren’t permitted. City ordinances require that posters receive permission before putting up any signs on public property.

The Cross Safe WeHo campaign was organized last week by Block and other West Hollywood residents in response to an accident on June 28 in which a man in a pedestrian crosswalk on Santa Monica Boulevard near Westmount was hit by a car. The collision caused his body to be thrown up in the air and onto the car’s windshield.

News of the accident prompted a vigorous debate on WEHOville, with some arguing that pedestrians needed to be more vigilant when they entered crosswalks, others saying that drivers weren’t mindful enough of crosswalk pedestrian traffic and others saying the City of West Hollywood wasn’t doing enough to ensure the safety of pedestrians.

A report to the City Council earlier this year said the Sheriff’s Department had identified four accidents involving pedestrians and one involving a bicyclist at the Hancock Avenue crossing of Santa Monica and three pedestrian accidents at the Palm crossing. The Council in February authorized the installation of blinking lights at those crossings and the one at San Vicente Boulevard. There already is a blinking light at the Santa Monica / Westmount crosswalk.

Block took his campaign to City Hall yesterday, where he met with Oscar Delgado, the city’s director of public works, and other staffers. Block said the city has agreed that members of its Public Safety and Public Information team will work on a plan to address crosswalk safety concerns.

Block, who owns the Block Party store on Santa Monica Boulevard and has announced his candidacy for the City Council, said other ideas worth exploring including printing safety brochures for pedestrians, writing crosswalk warnings on sidewalks and enabling Sheriff’s deputies to ticket pedestrians and drivers who are texting or talking on their cell phones while walking through or crossing crosswalks.

The Cross Safe WeHo campaign has a Facebook page where its latest actions are posted.


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Chris
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Chris

It’s a tragedy any lives have been lost. I don’t know the details of Clint’s death nor the others, so I am not commenting on them specifically. I will comment on the general attitude of West Hollywood pedestrians: entitled and clueless. Pedestrians legally have the right of way but arrogantly assume traffic will stop for them. This is a deadly mistake. Most adults weight between 100 – 200, Most cars weigh 3000 – 6000 pounds. YOU need to be responsible and conscientious because you’re going to lose. Think about how long it takes someone walking to stop vs. thousands of… Read more »

Bradford of West Hollywood
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Bradford of West Hollywood

Many on this thread are criticizing Larry Block for self promoting with these “pay attention” signs because he is running for city council. So . . . what’s wrong with that? Does that negate what the signs say? Does that detract from the positive results they may create? If someone sees a sign, is reminded to looks both ways, does so, and therefore is more aware of the traffic conditions along SMB, is it somehow less of a positive thing just because the person who put up the signs is running for city council? Don’t we WANT someone who will… Read more »

Weston Harris
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Weston Harris

1) the city is not active in enforcing sign posting regulations, for example temporary tow-away signs stapled to the city trees for the Pride event noted as “defacing public trees”. When this was noticed to the city with a line to the culprits, nothing was done. It took repeated notices to get the left-over sign debris and piles of staples pulled out of the trees trunks. 2) as others have observed, flashing lights at crosswalks in non-flashing light environments may be effective, but more flashing lights in a lighting environment filled with flashing lights and distractions is just adding more… Read more »

wehoenthusiast
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wehoenthusiast

@Christopher I was thinking pedestrian bridges would be a novel approach but then why make people have to do that? If there were escalators then O.K. but no matter what in crosswalks or lights (that don’t seem to have enough time) the blame falls on the driver although I myself have texted while walking aimlessly and was at fault for not keeping up with the light. I DO applaud Larry Block, I think he cares alot about the city and okay code compliance is that such a huge issue when this it about public safety?? Those signs might have saved… Read more »

Eric
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Eric

I commend Mr. Block for his efforts to actually help the people of WEHO. Its great to see a community member stand up for the crosswalks and even if what he says is true, the crosswalk item approved in february has not been sent out to bid. I really admire Mr. Block for being the good cop. God knows we need more of them in this city. Crosswalk safety has become such a major issue in our town. How many innocent people are going to have to die before some really changes are made. Seems to me Mr. Block is… Read more »

Larry Block
Guest

Hi Everybody, First off, Im a member of Cross Safe WeHo.. and when asked to take the lead I volunteered my time. When making the signs I called Phil, the founder and asked it it was ok to put my name in small print on the bottom. a) to protect cross safe weho b) all it said was #larryblock4weho, put west hollywood first… and c).. so that code compliance can pick on me, and I take the blame, In hindsight.. I didn’t need to put my name on it at all. But it garnered some attention.. the Public Safety Office… Read more »

mikey
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mikey

Larry, I have no doubt that your heart is in the right place and well meaning….
but I respectfully suggest that you pull back and take a calming
deep breath…..Gov. Christy is not a good role model for you.
I agree with Manny’s comments….he’s very bright and makes valid points.
Taking down light pole signs is not his style.

JJ
Guest
JJ

I agree with Mikey. Larry, I dont know you but a word of advice from a hot head…you need to come across in a more calm, respectful, authoritative manner without sounding like you’re losing your composure. Like every candidate likes to do, they paint everyone at City Hall as incompetent, the ones running for a chance to get elected are all innocent and fighters for the good. Let me just say that this City has been run pretty damn good since Cityhood. We’ve accomplished a lot, kept money in the bank and all the whole have become a world class… Read more »

Manny
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Manny

Thank you Fallopia……@Riley, do you know where I was or what I did about illegal campaign signs in 2013? I don’t think you do. But one place I wasn’t was removing illegally placed signs then or now. (no apology get for an earlier accusation) The point is simple, don’t place signs with political url’s anywhere in the public space, don’t act entitled, don’t put anything other than a “safe crosswalks” Facebook page or website on public notices, don’t feel that because you have a civic resume you can’t be criticized and most importantly don’t allow a good cause to be… Read more »

Brian Holt
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Brian Holt

@Manny, JJ, I agree with most of what you say. I do respect and greatly appreciate civic minded folks like Block, it cannot go unnoticed he is in campaign mode. Whether or not Block or his supporters realize it has the smell of self promotion. And it’s a freaking crosswalk… Cars will ALWAYS win. Peds need to take the extra step to keep themselves safe. Says a avid WeHo walker!

Fallopia Lopez
Guest
Fallopia Lopez

Manny is entirely correct. Someone posts a bunch of signs that say “look both ways before crossing the street” with their Twitter handle and their CAMPAIGN website at the bottom, and it’s not self-promotion? Give me a break. Larry and his lap dogs then attack Manny for pointing this out? The “Who are you to be so critical?” comment is pretty arrogant, to say the least. If Larry didn’t want the political attention, he didn’t have to put his name on the (illegal) postings.

Riley
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Riley

@ Manny and @ JJ where were YOU guys when during the last campaign Duran/Prang signs went up all over my neighborhood, duct taped to the utility poles saying they were friends of the animals? Too bad wehoville.com doesn’t let us post pictures. Why didn’t you run around and remove THOSE signs? Hmmmm, double standards going on. Block may be running for council, but seems he is running a platform of things that people care about like safety and the city flag. What are young Mr. Mason and all the others running on? And where are all the other gazillion… Read more »

Rob Bergstein
Guest
Rob Bergstein

so, yes, I know that when I enter a crosswalk, legally, I have the right of way. but would I rather be right & injured or dead or would I rather make sure I’m safe. So here’s what I do–I’m not on my cell phone; l look both ways; I make eye contact with the cars closest to the crosswalk so I know they see me; when I walk through one lane, I slow my walk so I can again make eye contact with the driver of the car in that lane; I smile & wave to all the drivers… Read more »