Pedestrian campaign chalks up the safety message

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey joined Acting Superintendent Ivan Sikorsky, Road Policing Command and RACQ Head of Technical and Safety Policy Steve Spalding to launch the ‘Be aware – Cross with care’ pedestrian campaign today, Queensland Police say.

The initiative is designed to remind pedestrians to be vigilant when crossing the road. Pedestrians in Brisbane’s CBD will be reminded to cross the street with care, with life-saving safety reminders chalked onto footpaths at several city crossing locations.

Mr Bailey said people crossing the street mid-block or metres away from traffic lights was only part of the problem.

“While it is legal to cross the street more than 20 metres from the closest crossing, people should look at their surroundings before stepping out onto the road at any time,” Mr Bailey said.

“The safest place to cross the road is at traffic lights, and sometimes this means walking a few extra metres and waiting patiently. Being alert in busy areas is important for every person using the road.”

Mr Bailey also urged pedestrians to put their phones down when crossing the road.

“If you are looking at your phone, you aren’t looking at the traffic signals. Both pedestrians and drivers need to be aware of traffic light changes and walk/don’t walk signs,” he said.

“Minimise distractions and maximise safety.”

Acting Superintendent Ivan Sikorsky, Road Policing Command, said that the campaign is targeting distracted pedestrians.

“Pedestrians share the road with vehicles, but have no protection in an impact.”

“By changing behaviours and increasing awareness, we can make Queensland roads safer,” Acting Superintendent Sikorsky said.

RACQ Head of Technical and Safety Policy Steve Spalding said simple lessons learned from a young age about safety crossing the road could be quickly erased by distractions like mobile phones.

“We learn about how to safely cross the road at school, because there are no second chances if you step into the path of a car,” Mr Spalding said.

“Checking for traffic might not be as interesting as checking your phone, but it’s something you can’t ignore.

The ‘Be aware – Cross with care’ campaign, launched today as part of Queensland Road Safety Week, would run in the Brisbane CBD for the next few weeks.

“This campaign uses street panels, walking boards and chalk messages on the footpath to remind pedestrians of their safety,” Mr Bailey said.

“We all have a role to play in keeping our roads safe. We need to step up to the challenge and look out for each other on the road. We all need to be aware and cross with care.”

Mr Bailey said Queensland Road Safety Week was about the community coming together to focus on safety for every road user – pedestrians, motorists, heavy vehicle drivers, bicycle riders and motorcyclists.

For more information on Road Safety Week and how to get involved, visit www.jointhedrive.qld.gov.au/road-safety-week.

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