OJAI POLICE DEPARTMENT
Nature of Incident: Increased Traffic Enforcement
Location: Areas around Ojai Valley Schools
Date & Time: Beginning August 24, 2010
Unit Responsible: Ojai Valley Station Traffic
With the new school year upon us, we wish for it to begin safely for the children as they find their way to and from their schools. The Ojai Police Department will be patrolling the areas around the schools and enforcing violations observed.
Many of the children will be finding their way to school on their bicycles. We wish to have the drivers make a conscious effort to be attentive to this fact. Parents of the children riding bicycles must make every effort to ensure their child’s safety as well.
It is required by law that all children under the age of 18 wear a safety helmet while riding. It is also required that bicycle riders ride with the direction of traffic, not against it. We have observed many bicyclists not stopping at intersections as required and riding on the sidewalks along Ojai Avenue where it is prohibited by Ojai city ordinance.
Many of the violations that have been observed / enforced are listed below:
- Speeding in the school area when students are present. The speed limit in a “SCHOOL ZONE” is 25 mph unless other wise posted.
- Passing school buses when red lights are flashing and stop signs are displayed. This is required for drivers on both sides of a roadway, unless there are more than one lane in each direction and a median separating the traffic lanes.
- Failing to yield the right of way to pedestrians within a crosswalk. It is also the responsibility of the pedestrians to remain in a location until it is safe to enter the crosswalk.
- Drivers parking / stopping in areas where it is prohibited by posted signs. This is a large problem on El Paseo, in the area of Matilija Junior High School and Ojai Valley School.
- Failing to stop for stop signs or red traffic signals and pedestrian control signals.
- Talking on the phone while driving. Adult drivers, 18 yrs and older, are required to use a hands free device. Drivers under the age of 18 cannot use any cellular phone devices. Texting while driving is also prohibited.
The members of the Ojai Police Department wish to make an effort to educate the community members of the various laws and violations that are frequently violated and place drivers and pedestrians at risk. Therefore, we will be out patrolling the areas around the schools and will be enforcing the laws and citing violators to maintain safety for everyone at this time of year.
Safety for the children is everyone’s responsibility. Don’t get caught up in the high-speed daily activities and fail to see the children on their way to school. We can all do our part to become part of the solution, rather than part of the problem. Drive and ride safely.
Officer Preparing Release: Senior Deputy Jim Popp
Approved By: Sergeant J.P.Ruby #1852