Police issued 87 traffic-related citations in Atherton on Wednesday, March 4, during a day of extra patrols with a focus on pedestrian safety.
Forty-eight of the citations were for speeding and 35 for drivers not yielding to pedestrians in a crosswalk, Cpl. Brett Murphy of the Burlingame Police Department said.
The patrols are part of a county enforcement program that receives funding from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration through a grant to the California Office of Traffic Safety.
Six officers in Atherton conducted "saturation enforcement" in places where collisions between vehicles and pedestrians have occurred.
Along with the speeding and failure-to-yield citations, one driver was ticketed for a cellphone violation, another for texting and a third for driving without a driver's license. Police made one arrest -- for evading police, Cpl. Murphy said.
The crosswalk enforcement was done at the intersection of El Camino Real and Almendral Avenue, a spot picked by Atherton police, Cpl. Murphy said. Atherton resident Shahriar Rahimzadeh, 32, died at this intersection in July 2014 after being struck by a vehicle while he was crossing El Camino.
Police did not wait for pedestrians to come along, but employed a sergeant in plain clothes and wearing a bright vest to walk out into the crosswalk as traffic approached, Cpl. Murphy said. Drivers who did not yield were cited.
The driver cited for a cellphone violation was holding a cellphone while using its speaker function. Had the phone been on the seat rather than in the driver's hand, there would not have been a citation, Cpl. Murphy said.
In making the one arrest, an officer on foot had signaled the driver of a pickup truck to pull over. The driver, upon learning that the officer was going to issue a speeding citation, said, in effect, "No, you're not," and drove off, Cpl. Murphy said. The officer got on his motorcycle, caught the truck and made the arrest.