Fresno police work to protect roads, educate residents on bicycle and pedestrian safety

CBS47 News

FRESNO, Calif. (KGPE) – Fresno police have been working to make the streets safer for both cars and pedestrians on the roadways.

A bicycle and pedestrian safety operation on Friday started at 7:00 p.m. and ran until midnight. Police said they would be giving out citations but they also wanted to educate the public on how to prevent these types of collisions.

“We know that we’re not going to reduce these traffic collisions solely by ticketing people, so we want to ensure that we increase the communication and let the public know what things they can do to prevent the traffic collisions,” Sgt. Diana Trueba-Vega with the Fresno Police Department said.

Police have been able to amp up patrol operations, curbing crashes and traffic-related fatalities, thanks to grant funding through The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Police said last year nearly 180 pedestrians and bicyclists were injured on the streets and 35 people were killed.

“So of course we want to ensure that through these operations that we decrease those numbers if possible,” Trueba-Vega said.

Police look for drivers who are speeding, using their phones and not stopping for pedestrians crossing the street. But they also watch the people sharing the roadways, asking anyone walking or cycling to make smart choices.

“[We ask] you don’t cross between vehicles, if you’re using the road that you use a crosswalk, that you use bright colors when you’re walking out and about, especially when it’s dark and to utilize a flashlight if possible,” Trueba-Vega said.

One week ago, during a similar operation, about 25 drivers were cited, along with 15 bicyclists and 10 pedestrians.

Police said their aim is to keep people exercising and enjoying the outdoors safely.

The operation is part of an ongoing effort to make the streets safer. Police said they’ll continue launching them on a regular basis.

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