SPOKANE, Wash. — Sidewalks near a busy intersection in Spokane now have the word 'look' painted on them.
It is part of a pilot program to get pedestrians to look before crossing the street.
The Washington Traffic Safety Commission and Spokane County Target Task Force chose the intersection at Browne Street and Second Avenue to test out the new signage.
It is meant to be a simple, low-cost reminder to people to be cautious while crossing the street.
Officials believe this reminder will save lives. According to the task force, in recent years, there has been an increase in pedestrians being seriously injured crossing the street. In 2017, 11 pedestrians were killed and 33 more were seriously injured in Spokane County.
“The sun is out, and that means that more people are enjoying being downtown as we head into the busy summer season. We hope the installations remind everyone to look up and be aware of their surroundings,” said Task Force Manager Karen Wigen.
The task force is funded through grants from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission. The task force is made up of people from area law enforcement agencies and the city of Spokane.
A new billboard was also installed at the intersection. The billboard also says 'look.'
“People walking need to make eye contact with drivers so you know where each other are going. Remember to look left, right and left again before crossing. The more we look around, the safer we all can be on our streets,” said Sgt. John Griffin, law enforcement liaison for the Task Force.
The reminder is not just for those walking, the Task Force encourages drivers to slow down and yield to pedestrians.