TxDOT launches new pedestrian & bicyclist safety campaign

Local News

AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Pedestrian and bicyclist-related crashes in Texas remain a huge concern for TxDOT.

“Unfortunately we continue to see too many deaths on Texas highways,” said TxDOT Public Information Officer Sonja Gross.

Gross explained the unfortunate rise of deaths stemming from pedestrian and bicyclist-related car crashes, which has prompted a new safety campaign to remind everyone to remember the rules of the road.

“We’re in the middle of a pandemic. So several people are still working from home and when we get behind the wheels of our car, we get a little bit of brain fog about us. We have forgotten how to drive. Then there are those that have been behind the wheel of a car the whole time and they’ve had this freedom of extra space on the roadway and they think that gives them permission to disobey the traffic laws,” said Gross.

According to TxDOT there were 64 traffic crashes that involved pedestrians and resulted in 8 fatalities last year in the Amarillo area.

There were also 27 traffic crashes with bicyclists that resulted in 11 serious injuries.

“One of the areas that I’ve seen a lot of accidents take place involving pedestrians is when they fail to use a crosswalk. Those crosswalks are there for a reason. The drivers are expecting you to use those crosswalks, so they’re looking out for you there,” said Gross.

“Obey all traffic signals. They are there for a reason, including the signals at the crosswalks that I just talked about. Finally, if a sidewalk is available, always use that sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk, walk on the left side of the road facing oncoming traffic,” said Gross.

This is all in hopes of TxDOT’s goal to go at least one day without a single death on Texas roadways.

The last deathless day on Texas roadways was on Nov. 7, 2000.

This has prompted TxDOT’s broader social media effort known as #endthestreaktx, encouraging drivers to make safer choices behind the wheel.

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