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Crosswalk marking program improves safety – but pedestrians and motorists have a role in safe crossings


The City of Saint John is working on improving crosswalk safety with new marking techniques to prolong the life of crosswalks on City streets. Pedestrians and motorists also have a role to play in making crosswalks safe for everyone.

The materials tested at Rothesay Avenue and McAllister Drive, as well as other locations in the city, are preformed thermoplastic, a reflective plastic that is heat set on the road surface, and 3M Pavement Marking Tape, a reflective sticker. The marking tape was used for arrows in turning lanes. The preformed thermoplastic was used to mark the crosswalks.

“The test materials have held up well over the past year at an intersection with heavy truck traffic,” explains Tim O’Reilly, manager of Pedestrian and Traffic Services. “Council approved $20,000 for more durable markings in 2011, with a focus on crosswalks.”

Not all crosswalks in the city are marked. Crosswalks exist at the legs of all intersections. Crosswalks can also be marked elsewhere on a road with lines and signage. Motorists must allow pedestrians to cross at all crosswalks, marked or not. When turning at an intersection, motorists must yield to pedestrians legally in the crosswalk, even if the motorist has a green light.

Pedestrians also have responsibilities at crosswalks. Cross only at crosswalks, and signal that you intend to cross by extending your hand and making eye contact with the driver. At traffic lights, wait for the Walk sign – a white outline of a person – before proceeding. Do not cross on a solid or blinking hand. Wear light-coloured or reflective clothing, particularly when it is dark. Don’t rely on motorists to pay attention to road markings or signage – motorists must have time to stop when you intend to cross the street.

For more information on the crosswalk marking test program or on crosswalk safety, visit saintjohn.ca/crosswalk or call Municipal Operations at 658-4455.

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