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FHWA Highway Safety Programs

Anytown Asks Pedestrians to Assess Dress via 'Kind Confrontations' - The National Pedestrian Safety Campaign


Date here


Name here, Campaign Coordinator

Phone number here

Email address here

Anytown Asks Pedestrians to Assess Dress via 'Kind Confrontations'

Anytown-On this, the third (day/week/month) of the Anytown Pedestrian Safety Campaign, the Campaign Coalition and volunteers will make appearances throughout the city asking pedestrians to dress for safety. Last year alone, 13 Anytown pedestrians were killed and countless more injured in nighttime pedestrian-vehicle crashes. Many of these incidents could have been prevented had the pedestrians been wearing reflective materials or carrying a flashlight. The Campaign Coalition believes that Anytown will be a safer place for pedestrians after today's round of "kind confrontations."

The approach is a novel one. Campaign organizers have recruited volunteers like the Department of Public Works Supervisor Anthony Taylor, Police Chief Tom Stall, local business owners and other civic leaders like grocer Sally Martin to be "Pedestrian Visibility Assessment" team members for the day. Each is charged with the responsibility of approaching passing pedestrians and engaging them in a discussion about their attire in terms of visibility in low light environments.

Pedestrian Gavin Lewis was surprised by the tactic. Caught in front of City Hall and dressed for work in mostly dark colors, he had not considered the possibility of being missed by drivers: "I'm so concerned about getting out the door in the morning, I've forgotten to think about going home later on. This has been a great reminder. They even gave me reflective strips for my jacket and briefcase and a flashlight. Now I feel much more prepared, and I'll be looking out to make sure drivers can see me," Lewis said.

Grocer Sally Martin reported that while it was a little intimidating to approach strangers and ask them to participate, she felt that the job held great rewards: "I know that I learned a lot in the training for today's event. I had not known about the importance of wearing reflective items. By talking with other pedestrians I've become more aware as well. And it's been well worth the effort. I feel like I'm helping to make Anytown pedestrians safer members of our community," Martin said.

Chief Stall, a member of the Anytown Pedestrian Safety Campaign Coalition and a volunteer in the assessments, also feels that our pedestrians will benefit greatly from the project. "My officers care deeply about Anytown's pedestrians," Stall said. "We would much rather spend our time preventing crashes than documenting them. We're conducting these assessments in schools today as well, so that the students of Anytown are thinking about their own visibility. This is a message that needs to be heard by all of our pedestrians: Make yourself visible day or night. It could save your life... or change it forever!"

The "Kind Confrontation" assessments will be conducted in the City Center area from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. For more information, please contact (Campaign Coordinator's name here) at (phone number) or (email address).