St. Pete police warn drivers of ‘high visibility patrols’ through May to keep pedestrians, bicyclists safe

St. Pete police warn drivers of 'high visibility patrols' through May to keep pedestrians, bicyclists safe

The next time you’re driving through St. Petersburg, you’re going to want to slow down and make sure you’re paying attention.

Police on Friday will launch what they describe as ‘high visibility patrols’ targeting high-traffic areas known for traffic accidents.

The patrols are part of the Florida Department of Transportation’s statewide “Alert Today, Alive Tomorrow” campaign, with an aim to “keep pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists safe on our busiest roads,” according to an announcement released Monday from St. Pete police.

The department said that over the next several months, “education and enforcement efforts” will be conducted along the following roadways:

  • 34th Street North and South
  • 4th Street North
  • 35th Street North and South
  • 18th Avenue South
  • 16th Street South
  • 3rd Street North
  • U.S. 19/5th Avenue North
  • 49th Street North

According to the announcement, police received a $47,214 contract to conduct the operations focusing on bicycle and pedestrian safety from December 2021 through May 2022.

“Year-to-date we have had 14 pedestrian fatalities compared to seven during the same time period in 2020, and two bicycle fatalities for both 2020 and 2021,” the agency said Monday. “Pinellas County ranks in the top 25 counties in the state for traffic crashes resulting in serious and fatal injuries to pedestrians and bicyclists.”

The department announced the patrols as a partnership with the Institute for Police Technology and Management and The University of North Florida.

“FDOT in cooperation with IPTM awarded the police department the contract to provide an increased police presence in high-traffic areas to raise awareness of and compliance with traffic laws that protect pedestrians and bicyclists,” the news release said.

St. Petersburg police are reminding drivers to obey speed limits, never drive impaired, and always watch for pedestrians and bicyclists. For bicyclists, police said to obey traffic laws, ride in the direction of traffic, and use lights when riding at night. 
As for pedestrians, the department is urging them to cross the street in crosswalks or at intersections, obey pedestrian signals, and make sure you are visible to drivers when walking at night.

This initiative will kick off on Wednesday from 5 p.m.- to 9 p.m., on 4th Street North between 54th Avenue North and 77th Avenue North.

Joseph Hubbard

Joseph Hubbard is a seasoned journalist passionate about uncovering stories and reporting on events that shape our world. With a strong background in journalism, he has dedicated his career to providing accurate, unbiased, and insightful news coverage to the public.

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