According to a recent study, Downey is home to several of the most dangerous intersections in California.
Estey and Bomberger LLP, along with data visualization firm 1point21interative released a list of the 444 most dangerous intersections in the state based on over 435,000 collision records, including every motor vehicle crash recorded by the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS) in 2015.
The study takes the total number of crashes, injuries and fatalities into account and gives each intersection a score. The higher the score received, the higher an intersection is placed on the list and therefore deemed more dangerous.
The intersection at Firestone Boulevard and Lakewood Boulevard took the fourth highest rank on the list, with 36 crashes, 32 injuries and no fatalities. It’s final “danger score” was placed at 132.00, compared to the average 68.24.
This wasn’t the only intersection in Downey to make the list.
Downey tied with Lancaster for the third most number of intersections to make the list with 11, following Sacramento which had 13. Los Angeles took the number one spot, far surpassing Sacramento with 221.
Downey’s other intersections on the list included Florence Avenue and Lakewood Boulevard (71), Florence Avenue and Old River School Road (77), Lakewood Boulevard and Stewart and Grey Road (126), Bellflower Boulevard and Imperial Highway (152), Florence Avenue and Paramount Boulevard (183), Florence Avenue and Little Lake Road (226), Downey Avenue and Firestone Boulevard (338), Downey Avenue and Florence Avenue (360), Brookshire Avenue and Florence Avenue (393), and Firestone and Ryerson Avenue (434).
The Downey Police Department released a statement in response to the study, saying in part:
“While traffic collisions within the city of Downey are certainly higher than we would prefer and efforts are continually being made to reduce that number, we believe that context is needed to properly interpret the results. The Downey Police Department has always prided itself on service to our residents. As such, our department is one of the few California law enforcement agencies that will take a traffic collision report upon request, even if there is
no injury. This is significant because the only way that a traffic collision can be recorded in the Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System is if there is a formal report. In other words, if the involved parties exchange names and information, or no report is taken, there is no record of the traffic collision in SWITRS and it would not be included in the numbers used to create this list.
“In reviewing the 11 Downey intersections that made the list, all of them would fall at or below
the average, if the Downey Police Department followed the reporting procedures of the majority of law enforcement agencies that comprised the list.”
Downey’s Public Works Department also disputed the study’s data.
“The accident data on which the 2015 study is based on is not reflective of the significant traffic safety improvements that have since been made to three of the intersections cited in the article,” Public Works officials said in a statement. “Traffic safety is a top priority and the City of Downey is continuously monitoring its streets and intersections to improve traffic safety to the maximum extent possible by completing safety improvements, primarily at intersections, to address safety issues.
“The safety improvements completed at the City’s intersections and roadways are intended to
address the types of collisions observed at the given street or intersection through the accident history of the particular location.
“The City is always pursuing grant opportunities to fund such safety improvements and, in fact,
recently completed traffic safety improvements based on observed accident history at the Florence Ave. and Lakewood Blvd., Florence Ave. and Old River School Rd.- Tecum Rd. and Bellflower Blvd. and Imperial Hwy. intersections, which were cited in the newspaper article.
“In addition, the city has secured a grant through the Los Angeles County Metropolitan
Transportation Authority (Metro) to improve safety at the Lakewood Blvd. at Firestone Blvd. intersection and the design work will begin as soon as the funding agreement between the City and Metro is executed. Also, the City has secured a federal grant which will include safety improvements at the Lakewood Blvd. and Stewart & Gray Rd. intersection in the near future.
“The remaining intersections (i.e., Florence Ave. at Paramount Blvd.) cited in the article will be
reviewed in terms of their accident history to determine what corrective measures, if any, are necessary to address the safety issues at these locations.
“Please note that any improvements to the Florence Ave. at Little Lake Rd. intersection cited
in the article would be under the Caltrans jurisdiction.”