LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – A new state-of-the art crosswalk has been installed at the same intersection where a crossing guard was struck and killed in the San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Valley Glen last month.
The Los Angeles Department of Transportation Tuesday morning is unveiling only its second high-intensity activated crosswalk, known as a HAWK Beacon, at the intersection of Vanowen Street and Sunnyslope Avenue.
HAWK Beacon uses an overhead yellow and red light signal above the crosswalk that have been shown to reduce pedestrian crashes by 69 percent, according to LADOT. It’s designed to force vehicles to come to a complete stop before pedestrians get a countdown timer to cross.
“This is the first beacon like this in the entire San Fernando Valley,” said L.A. City Councilman Paul Krekorian said in a news conference Tuesday.
On Sept. 16, a 57-year-old crossing guard and a 16-year-old girl were struck by a car while in the same crosswalk. The crossing guard, identified as Delia Huerta Arrearan, died from her injuries. The girl survived.
The driver remained at the scene and cooperated with investigators, who believe the crash was an accident.
LADOT officials say beacon serves as a step between the traditional yellow flashing light and a full traffic signal. Due to the number of accidents the intersection has seen, it will receive a full traffic signal within the next year.