Mannequins help kick off pedestrian safety blitz

[B' Spokes: if Baltimore was the size of Chicago we would be putting up 61Mannequins (vs. Chicago's 32 ), yet pedestrian safety remains a low priority for Baltimore.I can't find the link at the moment but bicycling facilities have been shown to improve pedestrian safety. My speculation is anything to get motorists to think about something other then "just other cars" helps.]
By Jon Hilkevitch, Tribune reporter

Chicago officials appear willing to try whatever tricks it may take to eliminate pedestrian deaths — even as they push a bill in the state Legislature that would allow cameras across much of the city to catch speeders.

City officials kicked off an effort Tuesday to reduce vehicle-pedestrian crashes, which includes safety messages stenciled on sidewalks, stickers inside taxis urging passengers to report reckless cabdrivers and flags for people to carry to boost their visibility while crossing streets.

The combined education and police-enforcement effort, involving about 15 initiatives, began with placing 32 mannequins — representing pedestrians killed in 2010 crashes across the city — on Wacker Drive downtown from Michigan Avenue to Wells Street.

"You'll notice that some of it is sort of hard-hitting, some of it may even be a little bit shocking," Chicago Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein said. He stood at Wacker and Wabash Avenue near mannequins wearing T-shirts reading, "One of 32 pedestrians killed last year in Chicago."

The city announced a goal to reduce pedestrian fatalities to zero by 2020. In addition to the 32 deaths last year, about 3,000 pedestrians were injured in vehicle-related accidents citywide, records show.

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