10-20-11 Crosswalk safety education! (VIDEO)
Some pedestrians appear to be miss-interpreting the countdown as
a safe time to begin crossing the road, resulting in a potentially
The new countdown style pedestrian signals have been installed
at most major intersections in Boise. Officers have noticed
that many people don't understand the meaning of the
signals. Many of them cross the street when it is not legally
permitted, after the countdown has begun.
Idaho State code 49-803 makes it clear that no one shall leave
the curb to cross the street unless they are facing the steady
"walk" signal. Once the flashing hand, or "don't walk" signal
is showing, no one is permitted to start across the street, but
pedestrians who have already legally started to cross may continue
to the other side.
This means that when the countdown has begun on one of the new
street signs, it is not legal to begin crossing the street. The
countdown is there simply to advise those who are already crossing,
how long it may be before the light changes.
Officers have noted that many of the pedestrians using the
crosswalks may enter the intersection long after the countdown has
begun, and rush across the street to make it before the countdown
ends creating a potential hazard for the pedestrian and
Officers would ask pedestrians to slow down, observe the traffic
signals and follow the rules to keep our city intersections safer