13 Investigates


Las Vegas man demands traffic changes after block wall plowed into for sixth time

Posted at 4:45 PM, Apr 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-19 22:17:08-04

A Las Vegas couple says their backyard wall has been damaged for the sixth time after a hit and run driver failed to make a left turn, and now they are demanding something to slow down traffic.

Pete De Cunzo and his wife have lived off of Spring Valley Parkway near Rainbow and Flamingo for more than 20 years.

De Cunzo says a driver plowed into his backyard wall recently with enough force to send blocks splashing down into his pool.

“I’m just glad it was midnight, on Easter we had the grandkids here doing an Easter egg hunt in the backyard with Easter eggs and I can’t imagine if they had done it then," said De Cunzo.

"Up to now, we've been very fortunate that nobody has been in the yard when it happened and no one has really gotten hurt," added De Cunzo.

The 19-year-old driver managed to drive away from the scene, but Las Vegas Metropolitan Police found the smashed Ford F-150 a short distance away, according to De Cunzo.

Contact 13 went out to the neighborhood and clocked several cars speeding through the area, some close 20 miles per hour over the posted speed limit.

"I want to try and get traffic slowed down on Spring Valley Parkway so they slow down before making the turn," said De Cunzo.

Contact 13 reached out to Clark County about the request. A spokesperson says there are no plans for a road redesign or traffic study, adding it is a police traffic enforcement issue.

"The best education you get is a traffic ticket, and we could have more officers to give drivers that education," said Erin Breen with UNLV's Vulnerable Road Users Project.

"This is a neighborhood street, and there is a very little time allowed for officers to be in a neighborhood like this because the officers we do have are responding to crash, to crash, to crash," explained Breen.

Breen said speeders feel comfortable on the stretch of Spring Valley Parkway because of the road's wide lane design. Breen suggests several solutions including the widening of the bike lanes with a buffer on either side of the street, installing a flashing beacon warning drivers to slow down, and an electronic speed-monitoring sign to ease the speed.

"When they said this was an enforcement issue, it is," added Breen.

Breen recommends people who are suffering with speeders to contact their local "neighborhood services department" in the jurisdiction they live and ask what can be done on a local level. Breen also recommends contacting local representatives.

Contact 13 confirms the neighborhood has a history of near-deadly speeding. The De Cunzo's backyard crash is around the corner from the scene of the 2013 hit and run crash that left trick-or-treater Brazyl Ward in extremely critical condition. Ward continues to recover, and the driver has never been found. 

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