The Tampa Bay area was quite dangerous for pedestrians and bicyclists as it set records in 2015 for the number of cyclist and pedestrian deaths. Both Clearwater and St. Petersburg police departments are trying to reduce the number of car accidents involving walkers and pedestrians.
This week, both departments are now issuing tickets for violating pedestrian and bicycle laws. ClearwaterPatch.com reports that Clearwater announced its awareness campaign related to bicycle and pedestrian safety has entered its “enforcement” phase. ABC Action News reported that St. Petersburg Police are also cracking down. If pedestrians or bicyclists violate the law, they will be issued a ticket costing $62.50 per violation.
Over the past months, Clearwater officers did not issue tickets but did stop pedestrians and bicyclists violators to issue warnings and make sure they understood the rules. Efforts have been concentrated so far on roads with a high frequency of pedestrian and bicycle violations, including areas near U.S. 19, Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard and Missouri Avenue. During the awareness portion of the campaign, Clearwater police officers stopped 132 people in December to make them aware of the rules. A total of 207 contacts were made in January with 141 warnings handed out. February saw 284 contacts made and 167 warnings issued.
Sadly, this week, a 50-year-old pedestrian’s penalty for violating the law cost more than the $62.50 – it costs her her life. According to TBO.com, the pedestrian was killed Monday night when she was hit by a vehicle on Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard just west of McMullen-Booth Road.
All pedestrians and bicyclists should follow the laws, but this new enforcement gives them an additional reason to follow the law.
Walk and ride safely and watch out for those who don’t.
Personal Injury Attorney Matthew Noyes represents those injured in car accidents, motorcycle crashes, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents and other types of personal injury matters. He is a named partner at the Tampa Bay law firm of Perenich Caulfield Avril Noyes – one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Pinellas County. Call Attorney Matthew Noyes now at 727-796-8282 or complete the form on this page or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.