Study: Education programs reduce Florida pedestrian fatalities

March 10, 2014 

The number of pedestrian fatalities has steadily decreased since the implementation of two education programs, according to statistics from the Florida Department of Transportation.

State officials said the programs - Walk Wise and Alert Today, Alive Tomorrow - have led to a drop in the number of pedestrians killed on Florida roads.

Kevin Gil commutes from Temple Terrace to Ybor City every day and is shocked at the pedestrian behavior he sees.

"I've seen woman crossing the street with children, talking on the cell phone, the kid on the hip and three in tow walking through traffic," he said.

Last week in the 16000 block of Gulf Boulevard, a person was hit and killed by a car. According to the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, the person was not using the crosswalk when struck.

Gil said it's not just pedestrians who need to straighten up.

"Now that Tampa has instituted the texting law where you can't text while you're driving, you can text at the stop light, everybody stops three cars short at the stop light so they can check to see who Facebooked them since the last traffic light," he said.

FDOT Spokesperson Kris Carson said they adopt a three-pronged approach with any project like this.

"Anytime we do any kind of safety campaign we call it the three E's: Engineering, Education and Enforcement," she said.

State officials hope both drivers and pedestrians will be more aware of each other and operate themselves and their vehicles in a friendly and safe manner.

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