Modesto Neighbors Want City to do Something About Dangerous Intersection Near Elementary School

MODESTO -- People who live near Lucern and El Vecino avenues in Modesto say it is a dangerous intersection, especially for kids walking to and from school.

Vickie Sperry, who lives near the intersection, told FOX40 she watches cars speeding up and down her street every day.

"They come flying through here and I can hear them," Sperry said. "They get right past my house then they let off the gas because the school's down there."

The intersection is the start of a school zone and John Muir Elementary School is just a block away.

"I've almost been hit multiple times just this year," said school crossing guard Shannon Cross. "Even when I'm out with my stop sign we get cars that run through, almost hit children, almost hit parents."

There's no speed limit posted nearby and Cross said drivers get upset when she stops traffic to let kids cross the street or when she tells people to slow down.

"We get flipped off. We get cussed at," Cross told FOX40. "We've had people stop in the middle of the road, threaten to get out of their cars and we're just out there telling them, 'Hey, you got to slow down. We have kids.'"

She said hundreds of students walk to and from school down Lucern Avenue every weekday.

Surveillance cameras from Sam's Food Mart show a near miss after three young girls left his store. The girls start to cross the road but then stop and run back out of the path of a driver, narrowly escaping being hit.

"I don't want to see nobody killed in front of my house or injured," Sperry said. "That's traumatizing, you know. It's upsetting to me because I see these kids and they're in danger every day, morning and night."

Now Sperry and other concerned neighbors are calling on the city to act.

"We need to send a message to the city. We need stop signs," said Saleh Suwaid, who works at Sam's.

Sperry said if something isn't done soon it's only a matter of time before someone gets seriously hurt -- or worse.

"We need changes. We need signs," Sperry said. "We need something done to protect these kids."

FOX40 reached out to the city Thursday afternoon about the resident's concerns. City spokesman Thomas Reeves sent the following statement:

The safety of our residents is among the highest priorities for the City of Modesto. We take great care in reviewing and improving any gaps in providing for essential infrastructure and quality of life services for those who call Modesto home.

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