Police Urging Pedestrians to Stop ‘Jaywalking’ After Several Deaths in Columbus, Georgia
COLUMBUS, GA. – According to a news story published online at wrbl.com, police in Columbus, Georgia, are urging pedestrians to stop “jaywalking” after several deadly pedestrian accidents have happened in the city so far this year. “Jaywalking” refers to the practice of walking outside of a marked crosswalk and against traffic signals.*
According to recent crash data, four pedestrians have been killed in traffic collisions in Columbus so far in 2019. Police officers believe many pedestrian accidents happen because people are crossing streets against traffic laws.
In Georgia, it is illegal to cross a road outside of a crosswalk when a crosswalk is available at the nearest intersection and when traffic-control devices are posted. It is also illegal to cross a roadway in a diagonal fashion where traffic-control signals do not authorize doing so. In other words, pedestrians need to follow traffic signals and use crosswalks whenever they are available.
While reporters with WRBL were investigating the issue of jaywalking, they observed a woman walking across the road diagonally, an act that’s considered illegal under Georgia’s traffic laws.
“It wasn’t an intentional thing,” the woman said when reporters stopped her. “But I think afterward, I just recognized that I just jaywalked, and I didn’t think about it being necessarily a problem. Although, yeah, I know jaywalking is against the law, it’s kind of cultural thing that has been accepted down here for so long.”
The Columbus Police Department has been ramping up enforcement of jaywalking laws and writing tickets to pedestrians in violation. A ticket for jaywalking in the city carries a fine of slightly more than $200.
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