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In 2008 a grassroots group of Washington state residents started Seattle Residents for Improved Pedestrian Safety. Their mission: to improve pedestrian safety and walkability by using crossing flags.
Crossing flags are placed at legal pedestrian crosswalks where safety may need improvement. The idea is simple, but it could save a life. Here is how it works: A pedestrian takes a flag from the bucket at the crossing and waves it before crossing the street. After the pedestrian has safely crossed, they place the flag in the other bucket. The flag is a simple, neon-colored flag mounted on a stick.
Seattle isn’t the only city in on the crossing flags idea. Salt Lake City has its own program as well as Kirkland’s program in Washington called PedFlag
Many of these programs are maintained by the citizens themselves. If you would like to adopt a pedestrian crossing in your neighborhood, Seattle Residents for Improved Pedestrian Safety’s website has resources to get you started. They have also included instructions to prepare your flags and buckets, as well as cutouts for each.
For more information about crossing flags visit Seattle Residents for Improved Pedestrian Safety’s website.
Photo Courtesy of Seattle Residents for Improved Pedestrian Safety
Victoria Pitcher is an Online Editorial Assistant at Ogden Publications, the parent company of MOTHER EARTH NEWS. Find her on Google+.