SAN ANTONIO – The number of pedestrian deaths has increased despite ongoing efforts to make San Antonio roads safer through Vision Zero.
The latest numbers released by the San Antonio Police Department show from Jan. 1 to Nov. 25 there were 53 recorded pedestrian deaths.
Here’s how previous years have compared according to SAPD numbers:
2018 - 50
2017 - 48
2016 - 60
Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales has been a lead advocate for Vision Zero which was implemented in 2015.
Gonzales said it’s going to take time and money to see a real change in the numbers.
“This is gonna be a cultural shift. It’s going to take decades to undo the auto dominance of the last 70 years,” she explained. “We have a long way to go, but I believe that we are making the proper steps. We need to make a bigger financial investment in making our roadways safe. And of course, the biggest thing we need to do is reduce speed.”
Randy Zamora owns a vehicle but he recently started taking the bus, and he says, the roads are dangerous for pedestrians. He has witnessed several close calls.
“Not only do you have to look both ways, even if the light says is safe to walk, you have to wait a little bit to make sure that they're not turning everything. Everyone's in a hurry,” he said.
He urges drivers to take the bus one day to experience what it’s like to be a pedestrian.
Gonzales said more than $3 million have been invested in improving roads but more needs to be done including improving lighting.
“People have every right to travel freely,” she said. “A person who’s walking has every bit of right to use the road in the street as a person driving. So, we do have to work together. It’s gonna take a significant cultural shift.”