Clearwater, Florida — Thanks to funding from the Florida Department of Transportation, Clearwater Police officers are cracking down on pedestrians and bicyclists who aren't using crosswalks to help keep them safe.
Earlier this week, Clearwater suffered its second pedestrian fatality on busy Gulf to Bay Boulevard, where a man was struck and killed by a car while trying to cross the street outside of a crosswalk. That's why police are doing extra enforcement and have been since March.
For Clearwater officer Andrew Anderson, his pedestrian safety detail is eye opening.
"Sometimes I can't believe it," he said. "There are areas to cross safely and people just don't do it."
Clearwater police are cracking down on those who aren't using crosswalks to keep walkers and bicyclists safe.
That's why the Clearwater Police Department has added crosswalk safety patrols, and issued warnings and tickets for months, working to keep people like Dora Martinez from losing their lives crossing busy streets.
Martinez walked right in front of Anderson's police car on Friday afternoon.
"Why didn't you walk down to use the crosswalk?" he asked after he pulled her over. "Now I gotta help you cross the street safely."
Martinez said she would use the crosswalk next time.
Clearwater police are using a combination of education and enforcement to get the point across.
"So when you guys are riding your bikes doing doughnuts in the roadway what do you think's gonna happen if somebody's not paying attention?" Anderson asked two teenage boys.
"We could get hit," they replied.
In just an hour, Anderson cited five people for not crossing safely.
"I mean it's their life. And the lives of others and witnesses, and all these things that people are traumatized by," Anderson said.