Thursday, November 6, 2014

Police ask for Help to Find a Downtown Hit and Run; Separately, Cherriots offers Cake

A couple of additional bits...

Hopefully you've already seen this elsewhere, but if not: A driver hit a person on bike on the afternoon of November 4th and did not stay at the scene to render aid. Police are today asking for help.

Video capture of possible hit-and-run
From the Salem Police release:
The Salem Police Department is asking for assistance from the public in locating a vehicle and identifying a driver that was possibly involved in or witnessed a hit and run injury accident on the afternoon of November 4 near downtown Salem.

33-year old Salem resident David Diedrich reported that at approximately 4:15 pm he was riding his bicycle westbound on the south sidewalk of Court St NE and just beginning to cross Church St NE when he was struck by a vehicle that was traveling northbound on Church St. When David was struck by the vehicle, both he and his bicycle were thrown up on the hood of the vehicle, then they both fell back to the ground. The involved vehicle did not stop and turned west onto Court St and was last seen turning southbound onto Commercial St. The victim sustained non-life threatening injuries.

Salem Police Officers were able to obtain a surveillance photo of a vehicle that was possibly either involved in the incident or may have witnessed it. That vehicle is described as a red mid 1990s vintage vehicle similar to a Honda Accord or Civic with a black colored right front quarter panel and possibly deep tinted rear passenger and rear windows. The vehicle may have damage to the hood as well. The surveillance photo of that vehicle is attached to this release.

Salem Police Officers are asking anyone with information about the incident and/or the involved vehicle to contact the Salem Police non-emergency number at 503-588-6123.

(As a side note, this encapsulates the reasons people bike on the sidewalk: Diedrich was inside of the "Pedestrian Safety Zone" [SRC 101.100] and probably should not have been on the sidewalk along Court Street - but the car traffic in the streets doesn't seem safe. It is good that the story here is "hit and run" not "biking on the sidewalk." Once we fix downtown streets for people on bike, there will be much less trouble with people biking on the sidewalk.)

Cherriots 35th Anniversary

Cherriots is celebrating 35 years today, and there's cake this afternoon if you're interested.

Cherriots' declining ridership
The agency sums up saying that
Salem-Keizer Transit has a service area of 67.9 square miles and a total ridership of more than 3.5 million. It’s been a good ride, and the best is yet to come.
But left unsaid is that budget problems and service cuts have caused a huge decline in ridership. It may be at 3.5 million now, but just a few years ago it was over 5 million. That's a decline of more than a third!

At a wedding anniversary you don't talk about the rocky times, don't observe that the couple nearly divorced a few years back and had to go to counseling, so it is untoward in this way to point out the declining ridership. (And since the video capture above may very well be from Courthouse Square, it might seem even worse!)

It is convenient, but not very truthful, to treat the system reboot
and the Third Bridge as wholly separate matters
But still. As Cherriots supports and embraces the overwhelming expense and damage of the Third Bridge, it is difficult to be cheery about Cherriots.

They don't seem to have the priorities lined up quite right for a transit agency.

Cake details:
Cake and refreshments will be served from 3:30 to 6 p.m. in the Customer Service Lobby at Courthouse Square in downtown Salem, 220 High St. NE.

No comments: