TAMPA — Police handed out dozens of warnings to pedestrians and citations to motorists Monday morning as part of a new initiative across Tampa Bay to reduce pedestrian fatalities.
Nine local law enforcement agencies, including the Tampa Police Department, recently received part of a $430,000 federal grant to ramp up pedestrian enforcement. The money will provide for 7,000 overtime hours, said Kris Carson, spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Transportation.
Pedestrian-involved crashes account for more than 20 percent of traffic fatalities in Tampa Bay, compared with about 11 percent across the country. More than 1,000 pedestrian-involved crashes are reported every year in Tampa Bay.
Aside from increased enforcement, DOT said it aims to make safety improvements to numerous intersections and boost pedestrian safety education.
Carson said workers will retrofit 300 intersections, which includes adding raised medians and repainting faded walkways. The project will cost about $1 million.
At some intersections along Gulf Boulevard, DOT is adding brightly colored flags for people to carry while they cross the road. The program mimics a Clearwater program and will cost about $25,000.
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