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Mom, daughter, dogs hit crossing Tujunga

Neighbors want stoplight at dangerous crosswalk
August 4, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A serious hit-and-run accident has triggered new demands to do something about a dangerous intersection in Studio City.A mother and daughter were struck down by a speeding car Sunday night at the corner of Tujunga Avenue and Woodbridge Street. Residents there have had enough.

Stand out at the intersection at Vitello's Restaurant along Tujunga Ave. and it's evident why so many neighbors in the area are so upset: Cars racing through the intersection, even as people are in the crosswalk. Sunday night, the result was a hit and run.

Surveillance video from a local business captures the hit and run. In the upper right-hand corner, a woman, her daughter and two dogs cross the street when a driver of a silver sedan runs them down and speeds away.

Trish Bethune heard it all just before 8:30 p.m. Sunday. "I heard like a 'thud' real loud," said Bethune. "I heard a dog scream, then I heard a lady scream, then I heard other people screaming."

The LAPD is investigating with little to go on other than the descriptions of a silver sedan.

"A vehicle traveling northbound struck both the woman and her daughter and the two dogs, and left the scene," said LAPD Officer Rhiannon Calley.

One of the two dogs was killed. The woman and her daughter suffered serious injuries.

"They didn't slow down. There were no brake sounds," said Bethune.

The intersection of Tujunga Ave. and Woodbridge St. in Studio City has been a problem for years, according to residents and business owners, who say drivers speed through the intersection with little regard for pedestrians.

"They zoom down here -- I don't know where they're coming from," said local business owner Gayle Silverton. "I'm concerned that this is a little commercial district, that feels like a small, safe neighborhood, and kids and older people and dogs are walking back and forth."

Trish Bethune said three people have been hit and killed in recent years, and something needs to be done.

"Every other month you're hearing a screeching sound of thud, or a dog getting hit -- I can't stand it anymore," said Bethune.

Local residents said they plan to petition their City Council member, Wendy Greuel to perhaps install a stop sign, or even a stoplight.

The LAPD is asking for the public's help. To report any information related to this case, call LAPD Valley Traffic Division at (818) 644-8000.

The woman and her daughter are expected to recover from their injuries.

 

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