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Irvine's PSA seeks to deter accidents

City is third in Orange County in incidents of run red lights and stop signs

Newport-Mesa also had plenty of wrecks.

February 18, 2012|By Lauren Williams

The scene opens on images of twisted metal, deflated airbags and glass on asphalt.

What resembles the opening scenes of the California Highway Patrol's "Red Asphalt," meant to deter drunk and irresponsible driving, is actually a new public service announcement produced by the city of Irvine to deter drivers from running red lights.

According to information provided by the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), Irvine ranks third in Orange County cities in the number of collisions and victims, where the primary factors in the collisions were missed signals or signs.

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Irvine ranked right behind the county's two largest cities, Anaheim and Santa Ana.

OTS spokesman Chris Cochran cautioned, however, that Irvine may be over-represented in the number of collisions relative to the population, and Santa Ana may be under-represented.

The most recent numbers show 351 collisions and victims in Irvine, during 2009 and 2010 combined. Anaheim had 475 collisions and victims from the two years, and Santa Ana had 385, according to OTS data. Numbers for 2011 collisions were not yet available.

Among the images used for Irvine's PSA are four images from crashes that happened in Irvine, Newport Beach and Tustin between 2007 and 2011, including at least one fatality, according to Irvine city spokesman Craig Reem.

After the initial images of mangled cars are scenes taken from the "Every 15 Minutes" campaign, where a drunk-driving simulation is shown to high school students, said Irvine Police Department spokeswoman Lt. Julia Engen.

Scenes with blood covering the dashboard or showing people standing near the crash scene are from the "Every 15" demonstration, she said.

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Newport-Mesa figures

Costa Mesa had 235 collisions and victims, and Newport Beach had 182 that were signal- or sign-related.

There were 4,161 collisions and victims in Orange County between the two years.

lauren.williams@latimes.com

Twitter: @lawilliams30

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