CHP Report: September Traffic Accident Results in Motorcyclist Fatality

Annemarie DonkinBy Annemarie Donkin      October 30, 2020

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CHP Report: September Traffic Accident Results in Motorcyclist Fatality
A woman injured in the accident was transported from the scene by an ambulance.
Speeding and unsafe passing on Topanga Canyon Blvd. between the Topanga Living Café and Café 27 resulted in a motorcyclist’s fatality on Sept. 18. (See report in The Canyon Chronicle, October 2, “Speeding Accident on Highway 27”) The traffic collision resulted in the death of the motorcyclist, who was taken from the scene via helicopter, with possible injuries to a female driver in a vehicle, who was transported from the scene by an ambulance. “It was a fatal traffic collision with a solo motorcycle, from what seems like an impatient motorcycle passing a motorist; he hit the guard rail and went down,” said Weston Haver, Public Information Officer, California Highway Patrol, West Valley Area. Haver also reported on the total traffic collisions during August and September, 2020. For August, Haver reported that on Topanga Canyon Blvd. from PCH to the L.A. city limits, the CHP responded to a total of nine traffic collisions—five were injury collisions and four were property damage-only collisions. The “primary collision factors” were unsafe speed, unsafe turning movement, and DUI. There were nine traffic collisions for the same reporting period in Aug. 2019. Haver further reported that in September, there were 10 traffic collisions on Topanga Canyon Blvd. from PCH north to the L.A. city limits. Of the 10 collisions reported, five were injury collisions (one fatal) and five were property-damage only collisions. The “primary collision factors” were unsafe turning movement, unsafe entry onto the highway, and DUI. There were eight traffic collisions for the same reporting period in Sept. 2019.
Motorcyclist was taken from the scene via helicopter and later died.
During the Oct. 14 Topanga Town Council meeting, Haver also reported that the CHP is proactively dispatching officers to the area during the Wednesday “Biker Nights” and car clubs, and enforcing DUI violations and speeding.

“We have an organized, focused approach,” Haver said. “We started a street racing task force. For August, we had six different operations, including Wednesday Bike nights, 7 p.m. to 4 a.m., and on Saturdays and Sundays for reckless street racers.”
Haver said in August they had 127 enforcement stops, issued 98 written citations, and made many arrests ranging from DUI to reckless driving, and driving with a felon and firearm in car.

“We towed seven cars for driving without a license; this happens throughout the whole Santa Monica Mountains toward Malibu and north to Agoura Hills and Westlake Village,” he said. “We also have undercover officers, who follow social media and hear about car clubs, bike nights, and find out where they are going.

Haver said it is also a joint effort with Lost Hills Sheriff’s Department and the L.A.P.D. But it is mainly the CHP who use their overtime budget to go out and catch traffic violators.
“In September, we had a total of 11 operations with officers working in addition to their regular shifts, motorcycle officers, 163 traffic stops, 132 traffic citations, and four DUIs in one night. We closed down street racing and towed four vehicles,” Haver said. “Our officers will continue to be out there as much as we can, hopefully we have the budget to continue the operations. CHP officers have a passion to get these reckless drivers off the road.” n
To report unsafe driving behaviors in Topanga and the Santa Monica Mountains, please call CHP dispatch at (323) 259-3200.
Annemarie Donkin

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