Jaywalkers beware: Citations begin Sunday on Clearwater Beach

Don't jaywalk in Clearwater Beach. Citations will be issued beginning Sunday.

Spring break brings crowd to the area's beaches, but if you plan to join them on Clearwater Beach... watch out.

Beginning Sunday, officers are going to start ticketing people who are caught jaywalking.

They plan to target areas with lots of bicycling and walking - including Missouri Avenue, Gulf to Bay Boulevard, State Road 580 - and of course - the beaches.

There were no shortage of people breaking the rules Saturday. Pedestrian after pedestrian was ignoring crosswalks and taking their chances in the middle of traffic.

One pedestrian said, "It's so busy right here coming from the beach, so many people do it."

Tim Sibert and his family thought about crossing the street with no crosswalk, then changed their minds…

"Probably because I seen there was a cop car right over there and I didn't want to get busted for going across the street."

In Florida, there were more than 100 pedestrian deaths last year. Clearwater is where many of them are hit by cars. That's why police are cracking down. Sunday they'll start ticketing you if you walk or bike across the street illegally.

Linda Adamson and Zino Lappas live in Treasure Island - another area full of pedestrians. They're big on using crosswalks and say they've seen people get hit.

" I think it's gotta cut both ways," Lappas said, "I mean if you're a driver, you only want to have to stop at the crosswalk not anywhere and it's just a lot safer, too many people have gotten hit."

"And I agree," said Adamson. "I think that they deserve a ticket. I mean they're right there. They're marked, they have lights and they're there for a reason."

"And, this should be a warning for drivers, too. Respect those who do use a crosswalk."

We saw three people were crossing the street and they were crossing in the crosswalk with the lights on flashing and a man came by in a car and starting yelling at them to get out of the road.

Taking the long route might not be quick -- but it sure is a lot more safe.

 

© 2017 WTSP-TV


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