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Santa Maria

Police to increase enforcement for bike, pedestrian safety

Hoping to reduce injuries and deaths from collisions between motorists, cyclists and pedestrians, the Santa Maria Police Department on Thursday will step up bike and pedestrian safety enforcement operations.

The Santa Maria Police Department has investigated over 230 injury collisions involving pedestrians and bicyclists during the past three years. Those collisions resulted in three fatalities.

Having mapped out locations where pedestrian and bike collisions have occurred, the Police Department will deploy extra officers to patrol some of those areas.

Officers will be looking for drivers speeding, making illegal turns, failing to stop for signs and signals, and refusing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. 

Additionally, officers will be looking for pedestrians who cross the street illegally or fail to yield to drivers who have the right of way. Bike riders will be stopped and citations issued when they fail to follow the same traffic laws that apply to motorists.

Funding for the operation is part of a $365,000 grant provided by the California Office of Traffic Safety.

In total, the grant will provide funding to conduct 74 individual operations, including 12 DUI checkpoints, 34 DUI roving saturations, 13 general traffic enforcement operations, four distracted driving operations, three traffic safety presentations, four bike/pedestrian operations and two suspended license/probation operations.

Santa Barbara County

Electric car show coming to Solvang Centennial Plaza

An electric car show coming to Solvang on Saturday, Sept. 8, will give people curious about the technology a chance to see some of the vehicles currently on the road and talk to owners about their experiences with them.

The show, part of the National Drive Electric Week campaign, will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Parking Lot 1 in Centennial Plaza at 470 Alisal Road.

The event is being presented by the Los Padres Chapter of the Sierra Club and the Community Environmental Council.

Attendees will be able to meet local electric vehicle owners as well as dealers and learn more about tax and DMV benefits available to electric vehicle owners.

For more information, email

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-- Staff reports