CHARLOTTE, NC (FOX 46) — The number of pedestrians killed by cars in Charlotte doubled last year. Police say 20 people died. That’s the highest it’s been since 2012.
Charlotte has already seen its first pedestrian death for 2017. It was a hit-and-run that happened this Sunday on Lawyers Road. Police ask for your help to crack the case.
“If your neighbor has a windshield busted out or front headlight missing in your parking lot, you might notice he didn’t have that before. Those are the things we’d like to come out and investigate,” said Sgt. David Sloan with the Major Crash Investigation Unit.
Police and the Charlotte Department of Transportation say they are working together to pinpoint trouble spots and make changes in the New Year.
“I can definitely tell you we will be out there a lot more doing enforcement operations that includes speeding, seatbelt usage, and impaired driving. We also have the ‘Watch for Me’ operations around the city to keep the bicyclists and walkers safe. We’ll definitely have a better year. I can guarantee you that.”
Folks will also see upgraded crosswalks on Albemarle Road between Sharon Amity and Central in south east Charlotte and on North Tyron Street south of Sugar Creek near the library in north east Charlotte. CMPD and CDOT say they’re targeting both areas.
But pedestrians also need to be safer. Police and CDOT suggest carrying a flashlight or wearing a reflective band if you’re walking in the dark.
“It’s about making yourself visible. I have a blue shirt on and I think it’s pretty bright, but at night it looks black. This is not making me visible to the motorist as a pedestrian,” said Angela Berry, the Traffic Safety Manager for CDOT.
CMPD says pedestrians also need to take the extra step to use the crosswalk.
“Instead of going to the crosswalk, they’re walking across mid-block, going across four and even six lanes of travel,” said Sgt. Sloan.
Last year, police gave out 1,000 warning citations to pedestrians for crossing the road at the wrong time or in the wrong place. This is part of the ‘Watch for Me’ program rolling out the second year in a row.