BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WMBB) — The days are getting shorter and first responders are asking drivers to be more aware of pedestrians on roads.
Last year there were over 10,000 pedestrian-related crashes in Florida. October is Pedestrian Safety Awareness Month.
“Where we particularly put emphasis on people being aware of pedestrians that are using the facilities out there that share our facilities, our roadways so we want to make sure that people are taking the extra steps that they’re so we can prevent pedestrian accidents and fatalities,” the Florida Department of Transportation Spokesperson Ian Satter said.
Florida Highway Patrol troopers said they’ve seen an uptick in pedestrian-related accidents in Bay County. Drivers and pedestrians need to remember these tips.
“If you’re a pedestrian and you’re out walking where bright clothing wear the reflective clothing there are clothes made with striping on it, reflective shoes fluorescent colors, be visible, be aware. We’ve got the world’s most beautiful beaches,’ Florida Highway Patrol Lieutenant Jason King said. “We have a lot of foot traffic, a lot of pedestrians, be aware as you’re driving down the road, know your speed limit, know your conditions, look for the signs that are flashing, the yellow signs that say pedestrian traffic.”
FDOT has installed one of those flashing signs on West Highway 98.
“Safety is always our number one focus so a lot of the things that you’re seeing right now and some of our widening projects, for example, we are providing pedestrian facilities, we’re building sidewalks,” Satter said. “We’re constantly looking at ways that we can improve safety for pedestrians whether that’s building multi-use paths whether that’s enhancing lighting in certain areas that may not have it, bringing attention with signage and other types of safety devices.”
DOT is currently building an underpass in Walton County and recently gave Mexico Beach a grant for a pedestrian bridge.
Click here to learn more about Pedestrian Safety Month.