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Ventura County Roundup / East | SIMI VALLEY

Accident Spurs Call for Safety Measures

October 09, 1998|TONY LYSTRA

Three days after a 14-year-old girl was critically injured near Royal High School, residents and students were calling for some sort of traffic control at the intersection where the accident occurred.

Residents along Royal and Buckskin avenues, where Royal High School freshman Erin Fonvergne was struck by a minivan at 7:30 a.m. Monday, say the area is filled with traffic just before and after school, making the crosswalk on Royal dangerous for students.

"When school starts in the morning, that [traffic] is just crazy around here," said Donna Murphy, who works in the rectory at St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church near the intersection. "Everyone's saying that something's got to be done."

The driver of the van was not cited at the scene, but police said the accident occurred because she failed to stop at the crosswalk. The collision left Erin with a fractured leg and possible back injuries, said Sgt. Bob Gardner of the Simi Valley Police Department.

Hospital spokeswoman JoLynn del la Torre said Erin's condition has been upgraded from critical to serious.

Cars are often negligent about yielding to students in the crosswalk, Murphy said. "They don't look; they don't stop."

City Councilwoman Barbra Williamson said Thursday that she would be open to comments from students and parents about the intersection.

But she suggested that the school district foot part of the bill for any changes. She also said a traffic light might not be the best solution.

"Usually, when they want to put a traffic light in the middle of the street, our engineers have a fit because it creates a false sense of security that the cars are going to stop," she said.

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