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Police looking out for pedestrian safety

Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– For the next six days police in four Michigan cities will work overtime to cut down on the number of pedestrian crashes.

They’re stopping people in cars and on foot to raise awareness and safety–thanks to a grant from the Office of Highway Safety Planning.

“Their primary focus is education,” Lansing Police Sergeant Don Porter said. “Currently we’re kind of stopping people, talking to them, letting them know what they’re doing wrong and then telling them what they should be doing to make the situation right so they’re in conformance with the law.”

Between 2013-2017, police in Lansing, Warren, Detroit and Kalamazoo saw roughly 3000 pedestrian crashes. More than 200 hundred of those incidents were in Lansing.

Porter says multiple factors can lead to people getting hit as they cross the street, including distractions like cellphones. But he also says one of the biggest reasons is people not crossing at the right place or the right time.

“If pedestrians would utilize those crosswalks and follow the controlled signals, you know, it’s for their safety,” he says. “They’re timed with the light cycles to give pedestrians the right of way at specific point in time.”

Porter says repeat offenders could face fines if they’re caught more than once. And even though they’re giving crosswalks a closer look this week, police will work year round to get the number of accidents down to zero.

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