Carmageddon II: Rollerbladers, newlyweds cited at closed 405
California Highway Patrol officers cited seven people on the 405 Freeway on Sunday morning, including a group of rollerbladers and newlyweds who wanted to celebrate on the closed roadway.
A 10-mile section of the freeway was closed for the weekend as crews demolish a section of the Mulholland Drive bridge, part of a $1-billion freeway-widening project that will add a new carpool lane to the 405.
Officer Rick Quintero said the first citation came about 3 a.m. when a pedestrian was cited for trying to enter the northbound lanes of the freeway at Sunset Boulevard.
The next two citations came about 40 minutes later at the same spot when two people were cited for trying to get on the southbound lanes of the freeway. The two were "recently married and wanted to celebrate on the freeway," Quintero said.
"Their wedding gift was a citation," he said.
The final round came about 6 a.m. when officers discovered four rollerbladers exiting the freeway near the Getty Center, Quintero said.
All seven people were cited, not arrested, for being pedestrians on a freeway, Quintero said.
CHP warned earlier this week there would be "zero tolerance" for pranksters hoping to repeat some of the antics seen during the first Carmageddon last year.
“People are either going to get arrested or they’re going to get cited,” spokesman Ming-Yang Hsu said. “Our department was basically embarrassed by the shenanigans that occurred [last year] and people posting it all. Even though we were being lenient … we’re cutting that out now.”
Quintero said it was a matter of safety — not only for those wanting to get on the freeway, but for workers doing maintenance along the closed route.
"It's unsafe," he said.
— Kate Mather and Matt Stevens
Photo: The 405 Freeway is empty as construction continues on the Mulholland Drive bridge on Saturday. Credit: Bret Hartman / For The Times