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Bakersfield police to deploy special patrols aimed at pedestrian safety

FILE -- A Bakersfield, Calif., police officer hands out a traffic ticket in a KBAK/KBFX file photo.

The Bakersfield Police Department on Monday announced focused enforcements on pedestrian safety this holiday season.

The department will deploy targeted patrols and make pedestrian safety an emphasis during routine patrols. The operations are funded by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Police have mapped out collisions involving pedestrians over the last three years. The department said it has investigated 49 collisions over that time that have involved injuries or death to pedestrians.

The department offered the following tips to keep the roads safer for pedestrians:

DRIVERS SHOULD ...

  • Look out for pedestrians, especially in hard-to-see conditions such as at night or in bad weather.
  • Slow down and be prepared to stop when turning or entering a crosswalk where pedestrians are likely to be.
  • Stop at the crosswalk stop line to give drivers in other lanes an opportunity to see and yield to the pedestrians, too.
  • Be cautious when backing up to avoid pedestrians, especially young children.


PEDESTRIANS SHOULD …

  • Be predictable. Follow the rules of the road, cross at crosswalks or intersections, and obey signs and signals.
  • Walk facing traffic, and if there is no sidewalk, walk as far from traffic as possible.
  • Pay attention to the traffic moving around you. This is not the time to be texting or talking on a cellphone.
  • Make eye contact with drivers as they approach. Never assume a driver sees you.
  • Wear bright clothing during the day and reflective materials (or use a flashlight) at night.
  • Look left-right-left before crossing a street.
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