Jul 25, 2022
Street Racing and Car Accidents Cause Sixth Street Bridge to Close for 3rd Straight Night
The Los Angeles Sixth Street Viaduct was closed for a third consecutive night following what Los Angeles Police Department officials referred to as “illegal activity.” At around 7:30 p.m. Sunday, the Los Angeles Police Department announced via Twitter that the bridge would be closed to vehicle traffic (though FOX 11 reported that pedestrians were still being allowed on the bridge).
“Unfortunately, we’ve entered another evening where the 6th St Viaduct had to be closed due to illegal activity,” the police department’s Central Area Division tweeted Saturday evening. “The day began with community residents holding signs in the middle of the bridge to ‘RESPECT THE BRIDGE.’ Let’s listen!” the tweet continued.
The $588 million Sixth Street Bridge, which opened to the public on July 10, was also closed overnight Saturday due to a motor vehicle accident involving a pickup parked in a no-parking zone that was struck by another vehicle, NBC 4 Los Angeles reported.
On Friday night, the LAPD reportedly made multiple arrests after street takeovers and other illegal activities temporarily shut down the bridge. LAPD Chief Michael Moore said that in two cases, individuals were “pointing green lasers at police officers,” according to NBC 4.
“After a 2-hour closure, the bridge was opened,” the LAPD’s Central Division tweeted Friday. “In less than an hour, 200 people arrived for a street takeover, fireworks and vandalism. Maximum enforcement will continue over the weekend,” the LAPD added.
Prior to Friday night’s street takeover, the Sixth Street Bridge was closed for approximately two hours due to another car accident.
Since the bridge has opened to the public, several street takeovers, drag races, car accidents, and even random “cimbers” have been reported on the viaduct connecting Boyle Heights and the city’s downtown Arts District, according to various media reports. On July 18, a driver involved in a car crash on the bridge reportedly abandoned his damaged Dodge Charger and fled on foot. Last week, an explosive was hurled at a KTLA reporter who was conducting a live report about a recent closure.
A report from local FOX 11 confirmed that, “Video on social media from last weekend showed drivers spinning their wheels and performing other antics on the bridge, leaving the pavement scarred. Some people even crawled onto the ribbon-like arches that line the bridge to get elevated views of the action.”
Police have vowed to take a “more proactive role in curbing the delinquency,” and fencing was reportedly added around some sections of the bridge Saturday in an effort to stop climbers, according to KTLA.
A July 20 article in Curbed noted that the recently opened Sixth Street Bridge poses risks to drivers as well as bicyclists due to being “built for a car crash.” At the time, the bridge had only been “open for about a week before drivers plowed into not just one bike lane but both of them simultaneously. Somehow, no one was hurt,” the Curbed report indicated.
As the article further noted, both reporters and safety advocates have raised “red flags” over the design of the Sixth Street Bridge. Streetsblog L.A. reportedly questioned the design’s safety for the better part of a decade. And as Curbed indicated, although project descriptions assured that the bicycle lanes were “protected,” they never appeared to be in design renderings.
“The bridge is still actually not finished; workers were closing lanes for construction this week, and a few barriers consist of temporary chain-link fences, some impaled with solar garden lights that look like they were purchased from Home Depot. Which signals that there may be a window for an intervention. What might the city do? Install a median to prevent street racing? Dedicate one lane in each direction to buses only? Place K-rail construction barriers – to be replaced by a more permanent solution – to protect the bike lanes?,” Alissa Walker wrote for Curbed.
Walker also wrote that during a ribbon-cutting ceremony to commemorate the opening of the Sixth Street Bridge, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti reminded the crowd that the viaduct was “envisioned to be a gathering space” and that it “might be closed to traffic frequently to host major civic events.”
A recent opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times noted, “Of course the 6th Street bridge was used as a drag strip. It was designed like one.”
“So far, readers have responded to the pictures of car wreckage and graffiti on the most celebrated piece of infrastructure to open here in years with the outrage one would expect. Most have suggested increased law enforcement or deterrence measures as solutions. As someone whose preferred methods of using public streets don’t involve cars, I humbly offer my take: How we design roads is paramount. You can have lower speed limits and all the safety warnings you want, but a four-lane roadway with no traffic signals and essentially unprotected bike lanes is about as welcoming to a cyclist as a runway,” Paul Thornton wrote.
California legislators passed a bill earlier this year – AB 3 – to directly address the increasing number of illegal street races and takeovers throughout the state, many of which have led to serious car accident injuries.
California AB 3 increases the penalties for violations related to illegal street racing or takeovers and also clearly defines an illegal street racing sideshow event, codifying that definition into state law.
AB 3 allows the courts to impose the following fines on anyone engaging in or abetting illegal street racing:
Suffering an injury a street racing accident as a driver, bicyclist, or pedestrian may entitle you to a cash settlement for various damages. The at-fault party should be held responsible for any economic or non-economic losses suffered as a result of your incident. A personal injury lawsuit can be the best means of recovering financial compensation for such losses.
Common damages that may be recovered in a California car accident lawsuit include:
If an illegal street racing incident leads to a fatality, the surviving family members of the decedent may file a wrongful death claim to recover financial compensation. Some common damages recoverable through a wrongful death lawsuit include:
Dordulian Law Group’s (DLG) car accident lawyers have helped injured victims like you recover more than $100 million in settlements and verdict with a 98% success record.
Contact us today online or by phone at 818-322-4056 to learn more about the many advantages DLG’s experienced team of personal injury attorneys offers car accident victims. When you choose DLG, you never have to worry about having to accept a lowball settlement offer from the insurance company or at-fault party. We will fight to recover the absolute maximum financial damages award you deserve.
And our No Win/No Fee Guarantee means you’ll never be hit with any upfront fees or out-of-pocket expenses. You pay nothing until after we’ve successfully secured a cash settlement for your car accident injury claim.
Contact a DLG Los Angeles, California, car accident lawyer today to learn more about how much your injury claim may be worth.
Our law firm in Glendale, CA advocates for victims of sexual assault, injury, employment disputes, and personal injury concerns.