The death of Delia Huerta Arrearan did not hit home as much as it should.
There were plenty of commonalities I could have tied into, but this is more with an overall problem because there are so many traffic deaths that these tragedies only become less unique.
In a City with an army of crossing guards, we know that every one of them has a thankless job trying to protect our children on roadways that doesn’t prioritize their safety.
We know that this could happen anywhere.
We hope that it never does, but with these streets we know probability will win.
I went out to the site Monday evening after I learned that Arreanan and a 16 year-old student were both hit at Sunnyslope and Vanowen.
Having a look at this intersection, there is little in the way of mitigating speed.
It is a clear, straight corridor where drivers can build up a lot of speed coming from the major intersections.
As you can see, there is a crosswalk as well as a signal, but we know this doesn’t offer all the protection you need.
One point I didn’t articulate well in the videos is when you press the crossing button, you have no idea from that vantage point whether the signal has been engaged.
That caused me to walk across the street very sheepishly, not knowing if it was working or for how long.
Crossing that street could not be done in complete confidence as whenever you have two or more lanes going the same direction, you never know when a driver will ignore slowing and whip around when they shouldn’t.
Leaving Monday night, I knew much would have to be done, but returning Wednesday afternoon was something I was not hoping for.
This was a first in returning to a crash site to now see a memorial placed where the absence of one hours earlier conveyed hope.
Now that Delia Huerta Arrearan has lost her life, I could only imagine how many circles the pain of this tragedy has struck.
We want our children and the people who protect them to remain safe, but our streets aren’t.
I hope this loss will be unique in that we’ll see change.
Donate to Delia Huerta Arrearan’s GoFundMe page here.