Thursday, February 18, 2016

Warning: Crosswalks May Be Dangerous To Your Health UPDATED 2X

Thanks to a tenacious Mt. Lebanon resident, here is the official Crash Breakdown 2013-2015  report from our police chief.

The report includes bicycle crashes, deer/car collisions, hit and runs, and pedestrians hit within and out of crosswalks. The number in parentheses is pedestrians hit within crosswalks. It appears that jaywalking is much safer in Mt. Lebanon.

From: Aaron Lauth <>
Date: Mon, Feb 15, 2016 at 12:44 PM
Subject: Re: Collision Rates in Mt. Lebanon
To: Mt. Lebanon Resident
Cc: Keith Mcgill <>

Mt. Lebanon Resident,

Please see the attached document for the statistical information that you requested.  Please note that we do not separately account for "single vehicle collisions", however the most appropriate statistical category related to these types of collisions would be hit & run crashes as shown on the spreadsheet. 

Please let me know if you have any questions related to this information.


Aaron V. Lauth
Chief of Police
Mt Lebanon Police Department
555 Washington Road
Pittsburgh, PA  15228

On Wed, Feb 10, 2016 at 2:41 PM, A Mt. Lebanon Resident wrote:

Municipal Manager McGill,
To make certain that my request is clear:
Mt. Lebanon asserts that we have seen a sharp rise in the number of deer/vehicle collisions over the past three years.  I am asking for the most recent three-year data (2013; 2014; and 2015) reflecting the occurrences of:
     deer/vehicle collisions
     pedestrian/vehicle collisions
     pedestrian in crosswalk/vehicle collisions
     bicycle/vehicle collisions
     vehicle/vehicle collisions
     single vehicle collisions
     and any other motor vehicle collisions for which records are kept.
I am confident that such statistics are kept as a matter of course and look forward to your response.
Thank you in advance for your assistance.

Update February 19, 2016 7:35 PM From Chief Lauth:

Your interpretation of the Pedestrian / Vehicle crash numbers is correct. These numbers should be interpreted as follows:

2013: 12 total, 5 of which were in crosswalks
2014: 11 total, 7 of which were in crosswalks
2015: 10 total, 7 of which were in crosswalks


2013 42% of the pedestrians hit by cars were hit in a crosswalk
2014 64% of the pedestrians hit by cars were hit in a crosswalk
2015 70% of the pedestrians hit by cars were hit in a crosswalk

Update February 20, 2016 5:35 AM Another pedestrian was hit in a cross walk on February 13, 2016 at 4:43 PM. Mt. Lebanon Police Weekly Press Report Thursday, February 11, 2016 through Wednesday, February 17, 2016


Anonymous said...

Many thanks to the resident who requested this information. I didn't realize there were so many vehicle accidents in our little municipality, a whopping 544 in!!

Nick M.

Anonymous said...

I think the last chief of police left because he knew the deer/vehicle collision story was a complete farce and that there were greater hazards to residents, including the ridiculous roadway insanity that seems to be getting worse.

Anonymous said...

Remember to add the pedestrian numbers together so Lauth reports 17, 18, and 17 total per year. I think the police work pretty hard to keep it to no higher than 17 reportable pedestrian incidents. Thanks to whomever requested these. I'd love to see the dates of the incidents. It never hurts to see the raw data. :-)

Anonymous said...

Lebanon Avenue – Pedestrian struck while crossing in crosswalk. 2/3/16

Anonymous said...

Last traffic board meeting. cop is telling board Lebo only has 10 pedestrian collisions per year and "a lot of time its the pedestrian's fault". While residents are concerned about the pedestrians being hit on Cedar Blvd. They are calling them freak accidents. Is it the blind leading the blind.. or....

Zak said...

Remember, those are only the reported ped/car COLLISIONS. What about the ones where the peds jumped out of the way?

E. T. Gillen said...

And the peds who jumped out of the way and got cited for hitting the car mirror in the process...
I need to do a needlepoint sampler that says:



Anonymous said...

Where is the ordinance that parents are alerted when their kids' walking routes become hazardous because too many kids are being hit by cars?

By education code in PA, when pedestrians are hit by cars during the time period before school and after school (when kids are walking) the route becomes hazardous if the 2 hits occur within a 3 year period. The details are in the code and are available online*. The 1/13/16 hit occurred at 8:39 am in a crosswalk at the intersection of Cedar/Washington. Thus, this qualifies as a school hit. So Washington Road is already hazardous (found that last year) in the section toward St Bernard and now I'm certain that Cedar/Washington is also hazardous by code. And yet, what does the municipality plan to do about it?

What is more important: kids' lives or autobody work due to drivers hitting deer?


Anonymous said...

The kids and deer do not count in our community! What can we say, otherwise?

Barbara S. said...

12:05 AM: I understand that the Mt. Lebanon Resident who received the Collision Rates report was confused by the way that the "Pedestrian/Vehicle Crash (In Crosswalk)" numbers were reported and asked for clarification. The official answer is that the first number under each year is the total for that year, and the number in ( ) parentheses is the number from that total that occurred in crosswalks. In other words: the total for 2013 was 12, 5 of which were in crosswalks; the total for 2014 was 11, 7 of which were in crosswalks; and for 2015, 10 total of which a terrifying 7 were in crosswalks! Sure makes you wonder about our "Walking Community"--doesn't it?

Oh...and I'm thinking that the way to go must be by bike. In those same three years, we've only had 2 Bicycle/Vehicle Crashes! And we're spending money on studies to enhance bicycle safety in Mt. Lebanon???

Anonymous said...

The email and numbers from Lauth conflict with previous reports by his own department. Do u think he isn't understanding the numbers?!

Anonymous said...

By November of 2014, the police department was reporting 14 pedestrians hit... and the year wasn't over yet. Just an example of previous documentation. I think they started cleaning up the numbers after they spoke with the high school students.

E. T. Gillen said...

14 as of November 2014, yet the chart shows 11 total. WTF?

You know what will happen, right? They will blame the kids for getting the numbers wrong.

Remember, since the blog is private, we don't have any lurkers like the commissioners, PIO or police to learn that we are on to them. Who is going to break the news to them? I hate this place.

BTW, my hearing is postponed. The Office of Open Records won't be giving their final determination of my second appeal until next week. This didn't give attorneys on both sides enough time to prepare for consolidating the two appeals into one hearing.

E. T. Gillen said...

Another pedestrian was hit in a cross walk on February 13, 2016 at 4:43 PM! See my 5:35 AM update for the link.

Anonymous said...

Mt. Lebanon is sleazy and dirty. I hate it, too, Elaine.

Anonymous said...

I think this is a cyclical pattern. I like to read at times and I have found the same language, ideas, etc. regarding pedestrian safety in Mt Lebanon over several decades. The police and the muni act as if they are crafting some major intervention when in actuality, it's all been done before and nothing has changed and in my opinion, it's only gotten worse. The sleazy part that stands out to me is the question of whether they are entirely aware of this or not. Sadly, I feel like they are aware of it and work really hard to maintain things as they are. It is sleazy, dirty and underhanded but I am glad that I am not the only one that is aware of it.

Thank you, Elaine, for providing this forum where people can exchange ideas, thoughts, insights, etc.

Don't drive over 20 mph in uptown.