The event marks the launch of the spring Street Smart public awareness and enforcement campaign. To drive home the call for safety, police departments throughout the D.C. area will support the campaign with increased enforcement of traffic laws that protect people walking and biking.
From April 11 to May 8, regional law enforcement will step up their efforts to identify and ticket drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists who break traffic safety laws. Violations such as failing to stop for pedestrians in crosswalks, running red lights, or jaywalking can result in fines up to $500. In addition, drivers may receive points on their driver record.
“It only takes one moment of inattention to have devastating consequences,"said MCDOT Director Al Roshdieh, "and that is why everyone -- drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists -- all who use our roads need to look out for each other. The County is committed to improving multimodal connections, making walking and biking safer, improving access for bus riders and reexamining road design with a view towards developing better options for all users. Our efforts are succeeding. Over the last five years, the average number of pedestrian fatalities in Montgomery County declined by 38 percent."
The Street Smart campaign kickoff took place at the Paul S. Sarbanes Silver Spring Transit Center, a multi-modal transit hub, serving pedestrians, bicyclists, bus riders, and train passengers. The Silver Spring Metrorail Station serves about 13,000 rail customers each weekday, and 24 bus routes serve the Transit Center, providing transportation service to more than 70,000 riders per day in Maryland and the District.
The Street Smart campaign offers safety tips for all travelers (see below). In an effort to prevent pedestrian and bicyclist deaths and injuries, the campaign partners media with enforcement to encourage all drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians to be alert, follow traffic safety laws, and stay safe.
To learn more about Street Smart, visit BeStreetSmart.net and follow us on twitter.com/COGStreetSmart.