Drivers Are Running the Red Light at Fell/Masonic, Imperiling Cyclists

Fell_Masonic_crash.jpgBicycle hit by a car at Fell and Masonic on December 13th, 2008

Last September, San Francisco's city attorney asked Judge Peter Busch to allow an exemption to the long-standing bicycle injunction so the MTA could improve the city’s second most dangerous intersection for cyclists, where Fell Street meets Masonic Street.  Even after the MTA adjusted signalization and gave cyclists a separate green light, cars are running the red light and hitting cyclists.

The latest collision happened Saturday, around 4pm, to Cindy Asrir, as she was riding bicycles with her 10-year-old daughter on the Panhandle Greenway after spending the afternoon in Golden Gate Park.  At Fell and Masonic, they waited for the bicycle light to turn green and then started across the street.  

In an interview, Asrir described what happened as she and her daughter entered the crosswalk. She said there were also several pedestrians crossing when a white SUV pulled through the red light, but stopped short of them.  A second car ignored the red signal and darted around the SUV, slamming into Asrir, knocking her up on the hood of the vehicle, and launching her to the pavement.  Asrir hit her head hard, though she credits her helmet with preventing further injury.  

According to witnesses, the driver had been talking on her cell phone. Later, she was not allowed to leave in her car.

A police report has yet to be filed in the case and Park Station police would not release any details about the crash, including possible citations and charges.

Though obviously shaken from the event and upset that the new light hasn’t improved things, Asrir was grateful that her daughter, who trailed behind her by a foot, had not been the one struck, nor a mother with a child in a stroller who was just behind them.

“I used to always be scared of that intersection,” said Asrir. “But I was so happy when they put in the light.  Now I’m scared of the intersection again.”

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