NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. -- Six people died in Westchester County last year after being hit by a vehicle and another 484 were injured. Those numbers haven't escaped the New Rochelle Police Department's notice, and to help keep local residents from becoming a statistic, the department is taking part in a two-week state initiative, the Pedestrian Safety Action Plan.
“This campaign reminds us that we all need to share the road and abide by state laws, most pedestrian injuries and fatalities occur as the result of the inattentiveness of motorists and the failure of pedestrians to use crosswalks, ” said Sgt. Myron JosepDuring the effort, warning cards and other "See! Be Seen" materials were distributed by New Rochelle police officers during the first week in lieu of citations.
“It is extremely crucial for motorists to be aware of crossing pedestrians at all times," said Josep.
This week, police will issue tickets to motorists and pedestrians who violate sections of the vehicle and traffic law, which addresses pedestrian safety.
The program targets pedestrians by offering tips and remind them not to wear headphones or talk or their phone when crossing busy intersections. Some of the tips include:
- Wear clothing and accessories that incorporate retro-reflective materials when walking at night or during other low-light situations, such as rainy or foggy weather.
- Cross the street only in well-lit areas at night.
- Never begin crossing in front of a parked vehicle.
- Always walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic.
- Stay sober; walking while impaired increases your chance of being struck.
- Don't assume a vehicle will stop; make eye contact with the driver and don't just look at the vehicle.
- Don't rely solely on pedestrian signals; scan for approaching vehicles before you cross the road.
- Be alert to engine noise or backup lights on cars when in parking lots and near on-street parking spaces.
- Obey pedestrian traffic signals such as WALK/DON'T WALK signs.
- Watch for turning vehicles; make sure the driver sees you and will stop for you.
- Look across ALL lanes you must cross and visually clear each lane before proceeding.
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