Police to begin crosswalk enforcement across salem

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Salem police plan to conduct pedestrian crosswalk enforcement campaigns this summer to address street safety through education and enforcement.

Lt. Dave Okada, a spokesman for the Salem Police Department, said the efforts will use plain clothes officers who will cross streets at crosswalks throughout Salem. Video cameras will record violations, and officers will immediately speak with the violating drivers, offering them the opportunity to view the violation on video and writing citations when needed.

Because of the grant money involved, Okada could not say specifically when the campaigns would begin or where they would take place.

According to state law, drivers must stop and remain stopped for a pedestrian when the pedestrian is “proceeding in accordance with a traffic control device,” whether in a marked or unmarked crosswalk. In Oregon, every intersection should be considered to have a crosswalk.

Additionally, drivers are required to stop if a pedestrian is either in the lane, or in an adjacent lane, in which the driver’s vehicle is traveling.

In a recent news release, Okada clarified that marked crosswalks can be located at or between intersections and are recognized by solid or dashed white lines. A vehicle may not legally pass another vehicle that is stopped at a marked or unmarked crosswalk for a pedestrian. Failing to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk and passing a stopped vehicle at a crosswalk are class B violations and carry a fine of up to $260.

The Salem Police Department is working on the campaigns in partnership with Oregon Impact, a nonprofit based in Gladstone that provides educational experiences to end impaired and distracted driving.

The campaigns have been successful in lowering the number of violations in the past.

npate@StatesmanJournal.com or (503) 399-6745 or follow on Twitter @Nataliempatehttp://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/2015/06/03/police-plan-crosswalk-enforcement-across-salem/28385237/

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Natalie Pate

Natalie Pate is the education reporter for the Statesman Journal in Salem, Oregon. Natalie has previously worked for organizations and publications such as Direct Relief International, Waging Non-Violence, and Amnesty International USA. She has had stories published with USA Today, Associated Press and Ozy, among others. Natalie earned her B.A. in Politics and French and Francophone Studies (FFS) from Willamette University. During her studies, she wrote a Politics thesis titled, "No One is Dying: How and Why the U.S. Federal Government Avoids Executing Prisoners on Federal Death Row" and an FFS thesis, in French, on cannibalism in the 16th and 17th centuries. Natalie is a journalist, performer, traveler, fiction writer and more. She is working to publish her dystopian novella, "Choice," which follows a man during 24 hours in solitary confinement for allegedly committing murder. For more information on Natalie visit www.about.me/natalie_pate, like her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/nataliepatejournalist, or follow Natalie on Twitter (@Nataliempate) or Tumblr (Nataliempate blog "In the Shoes of a Journalist"). Her reporting with the Statesman Journal can also be found at www.StatesmanJournal.com.

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