More bicyclists and pedestrians are being killed in California, an increase particularly noted in the past six years. Across the state, traffic-related deaths overall rose 17 percent after a 10-year low in 2010. In 2015, 3,176 people were killed.
The Santa Barbara Police Department received a $250,000 grant this month for more enforcement and education for the public about distracted driving caused by technology like smart phones and also drug-impaired driving. The police will use the extra funding — which came from the state Office of Traffic Safety — on drunk-driving operations and warrant service, including “hot sheets” that identify repeat offenders; enforcement of bicycle and pedestrian safety, as well as seat belt and child safety seat rules; and a concentration on distracted driving, speeding, and preventing crashes at intersections.