Police ticked pedestrians last fall during a pedestrian operation similar to the one planned in Berkeley on Saturday. Photo: Eric Panzer
Police ticketed pedestrians last fall during an operation similar to the one planned in Berkeley on Saturday. Photo: Eric Panzer

Berkeley Police traffic officers will be out for a special enforcement effort Saturday to educate — and potentially ticket — pedestrians who violate traffic laws.

The Berkeley Police Department will be in the downtown area Saturday, Jan. 24, on the lookout for pedestrians who flout signal lights and fail to use crosswalks, along with other safety issues.

A similar operation in Berkeley in September prompted waves of comment on the Berkeleyside Facebook page and on a subsequent story on Berkeleyside itself.

Police said this week that, according to 2013 data, most of the city’s injury collisions with pedestrians involved pedestrians downtown. That year, 24% of all collisions with injuries involved pedestrians, according to a statement released Thursday by the department.

Among all pedestrian-involved collisions, 60% took place in crosswalks. And, as one might expect, the busiest crosswalks are the ones most likely to be the locations of accidents.

Police said they will also be on the lookout for other violations related to vehicle and bicycle safety.

Police included tips for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists to remind them about ways to stay safe on the road.

Police said pedestrians should obey traffic signs and signals; enter the roadway only where it is legal to do so (such as at a crosswalk); avoid distractions by cellphones and other devices; watch for turning vehicles; and avoid the assumption that drivers or cyclists are able to see them.

For drivers and cyclists, police provided the following tips:

  • Be vigilant when driving/riding; expect the unexpected
  • When approaching a crosswalk area slow down and be prepared to stop for a pedestrian
  • Do not pass a vehicle stopped for a pedestrian
  • Stop for pedestrians in a crosswalk
  • Don’t assume a pedestrian sees you

Don’t expect the operation to be a one-time affair. The Traffic Bureau plans to conduct future stings focused on various aspects of traffic safety, according to Thursday’s statement. According to police, “Many of the projects are based on community concerns and traffic collision data regarding vehicle, bicycle and pedestrian safety violations. The ultimate goal of the projects is to foster greater overall traffic and pedestrian safety.”

Police released the information using its Nixle community alert system. See the original message — which is also posted in Spanish — and learn how to sign up for Nixle alerts.

Police: Avoid Bancroft and Telegraph due to construction

For those out and about in Berkeley on Saturday, police also posted a notice about expected traffic delays around Bancroft Way and Telegraph Avenue on Saturday between 5 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Construction, related to the Lower Sproul Redevelopment project, will reduce Bancroft to one lane going west from Telegraph to Dana Street. Police say drivers should consider using alternate routes. (Questions or concerns regarding the construction can be directed UC Berkeley Real Estate at 510-643-4793.)

See more Nixle alerts from the Berkeley Police Department.

Injured pedestrian taken to hospital after Berkeley crash (01.15.15)
A tragic death in Berkeley spurs funds for traffic beacons (12.22.14)
Police ticket pedestrians for downtown traffic violations (09.24.14)
Driver charged in vehicular manslaughter of Berkeley man is ‘legally blind’ (08.04.14)
Driver to enter plea after woman hurt in hit-and-run near Berkeley’s People’s Park (07.16.14)
Berkeley Police stop sparks racial controversy (05.09.14)
Car strikes and kills 98-year-old pedestrian in Berkeley (04.05.14)
Berkeley sets speed limit at 15 mph around 13 schools (03.19.14)
Driver strikes 3 blind pedestrians in Berkeley, flees (10.25.13)
Pedestrian hospitalized after car crash in Berkeley (09.26.13)
$15,000 reward offered after pedestrian hit-and-run death (07.23.13)

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Emilie Raguso (former senior editor, news) joined Berkeleyside in 2012 and covered politics, public safety and development until her departure in 2022. In 2017, Emilie was named Journalist...