… (W)e began unveiling “driver report cards” signs at certain crosswalks to show the percentage of drivers who stop for people waiting to walk or roll across the street. This is the start of a larger $350,000 public-education campaign focused on the benefits of following the speed limit and making sure drivers understand that all intersections are crosswalks – and that state law requires them to stop for pedestrians and people in wheelchairs or other mobility assistive devices who are attempting to cross the street.
Per Washington State law, practically all intersections are legal pedestrian crossings, whether or not there is a painted crosswalk, unless a sign officially says that people are not allowed to cross the street in a certain location. That means drivers are legally required to stop for people crossing the street at nearly every intersection in Seattle and throughout the state.
Two of the first signs, including the one in the top photo, are in High Point, at 34th Ave SW and SW Morgan St (where there’s a painted crosswalk) and at Sylvan Way SW and SW Sylvan Heights Dr (an unpainted crossing). While the former has the 46 percent stop rate – as observed by a high-school-student volunteer, SDOT says – the latter has a 0% rate (out of 25 passing drivers). SDOT plans to use signs like these at 13 intersections around the city, for starters.
ADDED 4:40 PM: We asked SDOT spokesperson Ethan Bergerson for a little more detail on how these signs will be updated: “The data will be collected and updated weekly for a total of six weeks. Typically we would collect data on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, and then an SDOT crew member will update the signs on Fridays. The high school students assisting with this have an internship with Delridge Neighborhood Development Association and will receive a stipend for their time. In addition to helping to collect data, they helped us to choose the locations and were involved with other aspects of the exercise in order to make it an enriching experience for them.”