The Surrey RCMP launched its “See and be Seen” pedestrian safety campaign Tuesday in Whalley.
Last year, 40 per cent of Surrey’s traffic deaths were pedestrians and 185 were injured, hence the campaign at “high-risk” locations.
The first intersection police targeted was 104th Avenue and King George Boulevard. Mounties, auxiliary officers and other volunteers handed out reflective bracelets and offered safety tips on site.
Sgt. Gary Clarke
“Officers will also be conducting enforcement and issuing warnings and violation tickets when applicable,” Corporal Scotty Schumann said. “The majority of our traffic incidents involving pedestrians occur when drivers are turning left at intersections or entering the flow of traffic, and when pedestrians are either jaywalking, wearing dark clothing, or not paying attention themselves.”
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“Road safety is a shared responsibility,” Schumann noted. “Staying visible and making eye contact with fellow road uses is not just a tip, it could reduce your chances of sustaining serious injury or being charged with an offence.”
The campaign is being done in partnership with the City of Surrey, the Surrey Crime Prevention Society and the Insurance Corporation of B.C.
Karen Klein, local ICBC road safety coordinator, noted pedestrian safety “is a concern at night and in wet weather for nine in ten drivers and eight in ten pedestrians.
“When driving, we need to take a break from our phones, be extra alert at intersections and be ready to yield the right-of-way,” she said. “When walking, we need to help drivers see us by staying focused on the road and making eye contact with drivers.”