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SAN BERNARDINO: Uptick in fatal traffic accidents this month concerns police

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SAN BERNARDINO: Uptick in fatal traffic accidents this month concerns police

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Tips for drivers

  • Don’t text and drive
  • Drive with caution
  • Don’t drink and drive

Tips for pedestrians

  • Wait until cars have stopped to cross street
  • Wear bright clothing
  • Assume cars don’t see you

San Bernardino Police Department officers responded to nine fatal traffic accidents this month, a record for 2015.

That number concerns Sgt. Vicki Cervantes, who oversees the department’s traffic division. Cervantes couldn’t discern what has caused the uptick in in fatal traffic accidents, but she theorizes that it could be a combination of people driving inattentively and a decreased police presence in the city.

Despite the reason behind the uptick, Cervantes said its important now more than ever for people to drive responsibly as well as to be aware of the cars around them. Five of October’s nine fatal traffic crash victims were pedestrians.

“Pay close attention and slow down,” Cervantes said. “One of my things is that even if I wasn’t clearly at fault I would feel horrible if I hit a pedestrian and killed them. It’s very traffic to even be in the striking vehicle. We have to recognize that there are people in the roadways and objects in the roadways.”

With Halloween approaching, the message is especially important, Cervantes said. Children will be out in numbers, and wearing dark clothing.

Cervantes said parents should accompany their young children trick-or-treating. Parents are encouraged to wear bright clothing.

“Assume vehicles can’t see you,” Cervantes said. “Don’t cross until either they stop or you know there is enough time to cross safely.”

Drivers are encouraged to� slow down, turn off cell phones, drive sober and drive with caution.

The same statement told of the 6:30 p.m. crash Saturday, Oct. 24, that killed 86-year-old city resident Maria Gutierrez who was walking along the 1500 block of Mount Vernon Ave.

She was hit by a 2013 Kia Optima driven by 39-year-old city resident Manuel Ramirez.

“it appears as though Ms. Gutierrez was crossing at mid-block,” Cervantes wrote in a statement issued Monday.

“Let’s do all that we can to prevent other families from having to suffer the loss of a loved one needlessly.”

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