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City of Seattle
Ed Murray, Mayor
NEWS ADVISORY

SUBJECT: Seattle Launches Holiday Pedestrian Safety Campaign

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
12/3/2010  2:15:00 PM
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Seattle Launches Holiday Pedestrian Safety Campaign
Take it slow and expect to see someone in the crosswalk this holiday season

SEATTLE—The City of Seattle is launching a Center City Holiday Pedestrian Safety Campaign this Friday and Saturday. Crashes between cars and pedestrians increase during dark rainy months, and holiday activities add to the distractions. By taking a few simple steps both motorists and pedestrians can make sure they arrive at their destinations safely and enjoy their downtown visit.

When driving motorists should:

-Never pass a vehicle stopped at a crosswalk

-Put away their cell phones

-Yield to pedestrians

-Make eye contact with pedestrians before proceeding through a crosswalk or intersection

When walking pedestrians should:

-Use the sidewalk and marked crosswalks

-Wear bright clothing

-Turn off headphones

-Make eye contact with drivers who are approaching

“Downtown Seattle is a great place to be during the holidays,” said Peter Hahn, director of the Seattle Department of Transportation. “People come to ride the carousel, shop and enjoy great entertainment. To make sure everyone stays safe and enjoys their visit, I encourage drivers and pedestrians to slow down and stay alert.”

Looking for a way to spread safety messages to a large group of people, the city formed the City of Seattle Safety Singers. Fun safety songs made from familiar carols are being sung at the 24th Annual Great Figgy Pudding Street Corner Caroling Competition, this Friday, December 3. The Safety Singers are performing from 6:15 to 7:15 p.m. on Fourth Avenue near Pine Street.

On Saturday, December 4, Bobby Bonsey of Seattle flash mob fame, has choreographed a public dance performance employing brightly colored umbrellas that will leave unsuspecting spectators speechless. The dance is happening at 2 p.m. in Occidental Park (Occidental Avenue S and S Main Street). The dance is being filmed to be used as a Public Service Announcement (PSA), similar to the Safety Dance Flash Mob PSA done last year. The umbrellas used in the dance have been placed in locations around the downtown core for pedestrians to use to stay dry and be more visible as they cross busy intersections.

“Downtown’s holiday festivities attract thousands of additional visitors, many for the first time, to our city sidewalks,” said Downtown Seattle Association President Kate Joncas. “The city’s pedestrian safety campaign provides an important reminder for everyone during the hustle and bustle of the season to take it slow and watch out for others so that their holidays-in-the-city experience is safe and memorable.”

Over the next few weeks, people will see posters in store windows and bus ads in bright neon colors with slogan, “See You in the Crosswalk.” This is the second year of the campaign. At the conclusion of the campaign a survey will be conducted to see how effective messages were in changing behavior. The results will be used in 2011 to further develop the campaign to keep pedestrians and motorists safe. The city plans on conducting the safety campaign for five years and if successful move it into other neighborhoods. For more information visit our Web site: http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/seeyouinthecrosswalk.htm

 


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Seattle Department of Transportation

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