By Mary O’KEEFE
Parents dropping off their kids at Rosemont Middle School on Tuesday morning, Oct. 16 were met with unexpected crossing guards: California Highway Patrol officers Kevin Denmon and T. Miller.
The officers were there to observe the traffic situation during school hours at the crosswalk on Rosemont Avenue just south of Los Amigos Street. What they found was a lot of traffic and a lot of kids.
“Drivers will stop here in the red [zone] to drop their kids off,” Denmon said.
The problem is not only are the drivers stopping in the red zone but then their vehicle acts as a visual block between kids in the crosswalk and cars traveling northbound.
“I gave out warnings today, but I could have issued citations,” Denmon said.
Miller was dressed in a reflective yellow vest and held a stop sign. Denmon was dressed in his CHP uniform and still some drivers seemed to be oblivious of their presence.
One driver who had just dropped off her child continued to move forward toward the crosswalk. She was traveling northbound and wanted to turn right onto Los Amigos Street. There were kids to the east of the crosswalk and even with Officer Denmon standing in the crosswalk, the vehicle continued to inch forward.
“I could write a lot of citations,” Denmon said.
Although there were a few defiant drivers, for the most part those dropping off their children seemed happy to see the officers. Some drivers even yelled a thank you as they drove by.
The officers also helped control the traffic, allowing those traveling westbound on Los Amigos Street to turn left onto Rosemont Avenue. There was a lot of traffic, but with the help of the CHP officers the congestion was minimal.
Unfortunately they cannot be at the crosswalk every day. In past meetings with the Crescenta Valley Town Council, the idea of volunteer crossing guards was discussed, however due to liability issues that does not seem to be a likely solution.
Councilmember Robbyn Battles and Rosemont parents and staff are continuing to work on solutions that are viable for pedestrian traffic at the school.
As the officers prepared to leave, another vehicle pulled up, this time traveling southbound on Rosemont Avenue.
“Look at that,” Denmon said.
The driver stopped in the red zone, midway into the crosswalk to let her child out of the vehicle. The school’s driveway where parents can pull in, drop off and drive through was only a few feet away.