TORONTO, Ont. – Toronto police are running a pedestrian safety campaign this week since children are out of school for March Break and the number of pedestrians on roadways increases.
According to police, 86 per cent of traffic fatalities reported this year have involved pedestrians. Six pedestrians have been killed so far in Toronto.
“I’ve seen in a second, people have lost their lives due to just one poor decision,” said Const. Hugh Smith.
“They’re making cars and everything safer but human beings, we’ve stayed fragile, we’ve stayed the same for all these years.”
“We do have to have that language change and that behaviour change,” he said.
Smith is also reminding drivers they have a heightened responsibility for other road users and pedestrians.
“We have to take that time to really think what’s important and when you step on that road as a pedestrian, you are taking your life in your hands.”
“When you’re driving, your responsibility for other road users, pedestrians is heightened.”
“It’s really about slowing things down. Slowing your pace down. Looking up and looking around and this again, goes right across the board.”
Police are focusing on intersection-related offences, pedestrian crosswalks and mid-block walkers.
Smith said transit users who step on the street before a streetcar comes to a stop risk a $110 fine. He said it is also against the law to start crossing a street during the countdown.
Jaywalking is legal, he said, as long as the pedestrian yields to traffic.