SPOKANE, Wash. — We hear it all the time from police: slow down in school zones, watch out for pedestrians and put down your cell phone.
On Friday, they stopped warning drivers and started writing tickets. It was all part of an emphasis patrol aimed at getting drivers to watch out for pedestrians.
Their also keeping an eye on pedestrians. Making sure they follow the rules of the road as well.
"It is truly about safety and getting people to be more aware of pedestrians and what's going on around them," Sergeant Terry Preuninger said. "We're not trying to trap or trick anybody. When they slow down and follow the rules, that's great. But as you'll see, sitting here for a little while, even with all the police activity and with all the media activity, a lot of people are still not paying attention."
This morning, officers and a few state troopers watched an undercover Sergeant Griffin cross 29th Avenue for about two hours.
During that time, Sgt. Preuninger said they pulled over several vehicles and wrote about 30 citations. At least 10 of those citations were specifically for failing to yield to a pedestrian.
For about a month, Preuninger said police enforced a zero tolerance for pedestrian law violations near the downtown bars. Now he's noticed an improvement.
"While we still have violations at times, we citizens, friends, catching each other saying. 'Hey don't cross!'," Preuninger said. "That's often when police are there and when they're not."
The message of these pedestrian emphasis patrols is just follow the rules of the road. Stop for all pedestrians.