Mayor Jonathan Rothschild has a simple message for those crossing streets in cars, on bikes or in their shoes: Look twice, Tucson.
Flanked by city officials and community partners, Rothschild unveiled a pedestrian and bicycle safety campaign that will include new solar-powered lighted street signs alerting passing motorists about areas with lots of foot and pedal-powered traffic.
Allstate Insurance will also sponsor an ad campaign promoting safety as part of the “Tucson on 2” bike and pedestrian project.
The news comes during one of the worst years on record for the number of pedestrians killed by vehicles in the Tucson area — at least 20 people have died so far this year.
The campaign, however, doesn’t solely target motorists.
The mayor said the responsibility of looking twice when entering an intersection rests with everyone.
“If we do that, we will see the bike, we will see the pedestrian, we will see the car and we will avoid a tragic collision,” Rothschild said.
City officials have confirmed that drugs and alcohol played a role in some of the fatal incidents this year.
Eight pedestrians involved in fatal accidents between January and October were intoxicated, said Tucson police Lt. Richard Anemone.
The first series of street signs were put up on 22nd Street in Santa Rita Park close to where several serious pedestrian accidents have occurred.