Drivers be aware, new crosswalk signs have been placed at various intersections in Grove City Borough in order to alert motorists of any pedestrians crossing the street. Drivers must yield to pedestrians within a marked crosswalk at an intersection or face a $50 fine.

New crosswalk signs have been placed at various intersections in Grove City Borough with the intention of alerting drivers that pedestrians have the right of way.

“The signs draw motorists’ attention and make them more aware (of pedestrians),” said Dean Osborne, Grove City Borough police chief.

According to Osborne, Grove City Borough applied for the crosswalk signs through the Yield to Pedestrians program initiated by PennDOT. The signs have been in place for about a month on West Main Street and Center Street and Osborne said more are on the way.

“(Crosswalk signs) will also be placed at all of the crosswalks in downtown once (revitalization) construction is completed,” Osborne said.

According to Osborne, PennDOT first had to approve the locations where the crosswalk signs would be placed.

“When we applied for (the signs), we gave (PennDOT) a list of intersections where we thought the signs would be of help,” Osborne explained. “They reviewed them and approved them.”

While the crosswalk signs are easily transportable, Osborne said they would not be moving from their set locations.

Osborne also said his department placed the crosswalk signs on roadways where possible, but have also placed them on the edge of streets due to problems with trucks getting past them.

According to a press release on its Web site, PennDOT initiated the Yield to Pedestrians program in October last year.

“These signs are designed to remind motorists to always keep pedestrian safety in mind,” said PennDOT secretary Allen D. Biehler in the release. “Too often, drivers are in a hurry and don’t remember to stop and let someone cross the road.”

According to Pennsylvania law title 75, section 3542, when traffic signals are not present or not operating, motorists must yield to pedestrians within a marked crosswalk or any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection. Violators of the law are subject to a $50 fine.

Since 2001, PennDOT has distributed more than 3,400 of the free-standing crosswalk signs to municipalities across the state, according to its Web site.

In order to receive the sign at no cost, a municipality must have either an area with a high car or pedestrian crash history or roadways that are difficult to cross because motorists fail to yield, the site continued.

According to a January 2007 PennDOT press release, a study in southeastern Pennsylvania found that crosswalk signs are very effective in helping to increase pedestrian safety. In fact, where the signs are used, motorists are 17 to 34 percent more likely to yield to pedestrians.

According to PennDOT, roughly 10 percent of fatalities on Pennsylvania roadways in 2005 involved a pedestrian. Of the 1,616 fatalities reported in 2005, 162 were pedestrians.

According to PennDOT spokesperson Alison Wenger, a pedestrian must be within a crosswalk, not waiting on a sidewalk curb, in order for cars to stop.

Trending Video

Recommended for you