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The most dangerous intersections in Los Angeles according to the most recent data statistics are, not surprisingly, all located in areas of high vehicle and foot traffic in downtown L.A., South Central Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. As an attorney that represents accident victims in LA., I thought I would point out where these intersections are located, why they pose risk of bodily harm to motorists, pedestrians, bicycle and motorcycle riders, and what might be done to improve the safety of these areas. I will use the top five most dangerous crossings in the City of Angels as determined by a study by KPCC, the local public radio affiliate and several other local news organizations.

Top Five Most Dangerous Intersections in the City of L.A. Chinese Theater
  1. Alvarado Street at Seventh Street: According to the latest stats (2013), this area had 25 vehicle vs. pedestrian accidents in the last five years. This intersection has about every feature that an urban interchange can have. There are two major roadways each with two lanes of traffic going in both directions plus parking lanes and (in the case of Seventh Street) a dedicated bike lane. There are numerous bus stops and the area is adjacent to MacArthur Park. It is also near many local businesses and restaurants (including “Langers”, an L.A. eatery that has been around for over 50 years).
  2. Hollywood Boulevard at Highland Avenue: This intersection reported 21 pedestrian accidents with cars or buses over a five year span. I though “Hollywood and Vine” was made famous in many prior movies and T.V., the intersection of Hollywood Blvd. and Highland Ave. is probably the most visited by tourists in modern day Los Angeles. Within a three block radius you have portions of the “Walk of Fame”, the infamous Grauman’s Chinese Theater, the iconic El Capitan Theater, the historic Roosevelt Hotel and the newest and one of the largest commercial and retail developments constructed in recent L.A. history, the Hollywood and Highland Center, which is comprised of a large mall of shops and restaurants and the Kodak Theater, which hosts the Oscars. The level of foot traffic in and around this intersection is as high as anywhere in the city. Tour buses are constantly coming and going as are city buses and commercial coaches taking people to and from concerts at the Hollywood Bowl.
  3. Western and Slauson Avenues: Reported 19 auto v. pedestrian mishaps over a five year period. This is a typical busy street corner in a busy area between the 110 Harbor Freeway and Los Angeles International Airport (“LAX”). Both roads have two lanes of travel in both direction plus turn pockets and parking lanes. There are several METRO bus stops and the intersection is within a block of a major railroad crossing.
  4. Union Avenue and Sixth Street: Also had 19 documented cases of pedestrians being struck by motor vehicles over the same period of time. Very much like Alvarado and Seventh, this is a busy area between mid-city and downtown L.A. Although Sixth Street is a major east west thoroughfare, it is narrower than the other major east west tracks like Wilshire Boulevard or Olympic Blvd. Again, there are two lanes in either direction of travel for Sixth with parking lanes and bus transit pick up and drop off stations.
  5. Spring Street and Fifth Street: Also reporting 19 cases of pedestrians being struck by motor vehicles. This is the heart of Downtown Los Angeles and is typical of the intersections in the city’s center. Multiple travel lanes on one way streets are bordered by major high rise buildings. Like the majority of downtown this is the most heavily concentrated commercial and office corridors and is not far from the subway station at Seventh Street and blocks from the Staples Center and “L.A. Live”. There is also one of the new bicycle “green lanes” that runs along Spring street, although it is only marked for a span of a few yards. These bike lanes have been painted in various parts of downtown to call attention to sharing the road with cyclists. It is debatable whether or not they have had any effect.

While the above five intersections have shown an inordinate number of pedestrian mishaps, the numbers reflected above are in the hundreds if you count total number of motor vehicle accidents including auto v. auto, bus crashes, and bicycle and motorcycle collisions. Other “hot spots” within Greater Los Angeles include several intersections in the San Fernando Valley (especially Van Nuys and North Hollywood) and crosswalks and busy crossways in the adjacent cities of West Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Santa Monica.

What can you do to Protect Yourself From Serious Injury or Death When Traversing one of the Dangerous Los Angeles Intersections?

Whether you are in a motor vehicle or on foot, there is one rule of thumb as you approach any major junction of two heavily traveled surface streets in the “City of Angels” and that is STAY ALERT! So-called “Critical Pre-Crash Events” such as running a red light, making an abrupt right or left turn without signaling or yielding the right of way to oncoming traffic, turning with an obstructed view, stepping into a crosswalk without looking both ways or waiting for the signal to change, or simply going too fast or misjudging distance or speed of vehicles are all related to inattention on some level.

Importance of Seeking Prompt Medical Attention and Legal Advice From an Experienced Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Following an Intersection

It goes without saying that being struck within an intersection in a car, bike or on foot can result in serious bodily injury or death. Seeking prompt medical attention for bodily harm is critical. What is also important is to determine whether or not there may be legal fault associated with negligence or wrongdoing including a violation of one or more California Vehicle Code sections applicable to controlled or non-controlled intersections. Prompt investigation such as obtaining the police report, inspecting the scene of the accident for physical evidence, and obtaining statements from witnesses at the scene can provide evidence critical to proving legal liability. A competent Los Angeles personal injury lawyer is best qualified to assist in this process and to make sure the injured party is not stuck with paying for present or future medical expenses or losing wages due to the fault of another. The law also provides for compensation for physical pain and mental suffering related to any motor vehicle collision that resulted from the negligence of a driver or mass transit operator. For a free consultation on any accident or injury claim call Steven M. Sweat, Personal Injury Lawyers, APC toll free at 866-966-5240 or at 310-592-0445.

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