News Releases

3/30/2016: UPDATE: Operation CARS Bicycle Ride Postponed

UPDATE: Operation CARS Bicycle Ride Postponed

Posted 3/30/2016 9:56:14 AM

what: Operation CARS Ride when: TBD; April 3 Ride Postponed where: Wakefield Commons, Raleigh, N.C. details: Bicycling clubs and enthusiasts from across the state will gather for a Capital Area Ride for Safety (CARS) to raise awareness for bicycle safety in honor of the four cyclists injured in a car crash in Johnston County on Feb. 20. Hundreds of riders are expected to participate in the 28.5-mile ride. Bicycle safety is a critical issue in North Carolina: each year, an average of 19 bicyclists are killed and 664 hit in reported roadway crashes. The N.C. Department of Transportation works with cycling organizations and local governments to promote bicycle and pedestrian safety through its Watch for Me NC campaign. CARS event organizers stress that, when passing cyclists, motorists should: Slow down; Wait for a clear break in oncoming traffic; and Change lanes to pass. Motorists, cyclists and pedestrians can find additional safety tips on the Watch for Me NC website. For more information about the ride, visit the event page or contact BikeWalk NC.     ***NCDOT***
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3/17/2016: NCDOT Announces 2016 Watch for Me NC Partners

NCDOT Announces 2016 Watch for Me NC Partners

Posted 3/17/2016 3:59:41 PM

RALEIGH - The N.C. Department of Transportation will partner with communities from the mountains to the coast in 2016 as part of Watch for Me NC, the statewide pedestrian and bicycle safety campaign. The Watch for Me NC campaign is a comprehensive approach to reducing bicycle and pedestrian crashes and fatalities in North Carolina. NCDOT received applications from areas interested in implementing Watch for Me NC programs in their communities and selected the following new partners: Brevard/Transylvania County Kannapolis Morganton Many existing partners from previous years will also continue to work with Watch for Me NC: Apex Asheville Boone Carrboro Cary Chapel Hill Charlotte Corolla Dare County (Outer Banks communities) Davidson Durham Fuquay-Varina Garner Granville County Greensboro Greenville Jacksonville Marion Murphy New Bern New Hanover County Raleigh As campaign partners, these communities will receive printed materials and media advertisements to help improve public awareness for bicycle and pedestrian safety. Partner communities will also participate in specialized police officer training. The UNC Highway Safety Research Center will continue to provide technical support with campaign implementation. For more information about the campaign, visit the Watch for Me NC website.
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3/15/2016: NCDOT Awards 2016 Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Grants

NCDOT Awards 2016 Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Grants

Posted 3/15/2016 3:59:59 PM

RALEIGH- A group of eight municipalities and one county from across the state will receive assistance with bicycle and pedestrian planning, thanks to grants awarded this month by the N.C. Department of Transportation. Now in its thirteenth year, the Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Grant program helps North Carolina communities develop a comprehensive strategy for expanding bicycle and pedestrian opportunities within a given community. Recipients were selected from a pool of 17 applications by an awards committee comprised of transportation planners from across the state, including representatives of regional planning organizations and councils of government, local governments and NCDOT staff from multiple units. Recipients this year include:  Carolina Beach (pedestrian plan) Carthage (joint bicycle/pedestrian plan) Cramerton (bicycle plan) Currituck County (pedestrian plan) Fayetteville (pedestrian plan) Flat Rock (joint bicycle/pedestrian plan) Laurel Park (joint bicycle/pedestrian plan) Newton (pedestrian plan) Spindale (joint bicycle/pedestrian plan) The planning grant initiative is jointly sponsored by the NCDOT Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation and the Transportation Planning Branch. To date, over $4 million has been awarded to 173 communities through the planning grant program. Plans funded are not for one specific project, but represent a comprehensive strategy for expanding bicycle and pedestrian opportunities within a given municipality. These plans address facilities, programs, services and regulations that encourage safe walking and bicycling. For more information on the Bicycle and Pedestrian Planning Grant Initiative, contact the Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation or visit the Planning Grant Initiative website.  ***NCDOT***
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11/13/2015: NCDOT Celebrates 2015 Watch for Me N.C. Campaign

NCDOT Celebrates 2015 Watch for Me N.C. Campaign

Posted 11/13/2015 3:01:37 PM

RALEIGH – The North Carolina Department of Transportation recently celebrated its successful 2015 Watch for Me N.C. campaign with an event at the Durham Farmer’s Market.    Launched in 2012, Watch for Me N.C. is a joint effort between NCDOT and the UNC Highway Safety Research Center. It is a comprehensive safety campaign, integrating public information and law enforcement efforts to educate the public about the laws designed to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists.   “Watch for Me N.C. plays a critical role in protecting everyone on our roadways,” said N.C. Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson. “We want to encourage everyone to see walking and biking as safe and viable ways to travel.”    Durham Assistant Police Chief Ed Sarvis introduced Secretary Tennyson and welcomed the bicycle and pedestrian advocates, Durham police officers and other members of the community who attended the event.    The 2015 campaign partnered with local communities and organizations in 15 counties across North Carolina, as well as the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. Each year, the campaign distributes safety materials to the public and provides education and safety training to local law enforcement and community groups. This year, 116 officers from 35 agencies attended Watch for Me N.C. law enforcement training sessions.   Walking and bicycling are increasingly popular modes of transportation and recreation. However, roadways built during the 20th century were not designed for pedestrians or cyclists - they typically feature fewer sidewalks and less available lane width for safe use by people walking or riding a bike. Between 2009 and 2013, an average of 168 pedestrians and 19 bicyclists were killed annually in collisions with motor vehicles in North Carolina. Pedestrian and bicycle fatalities on roadways represent, on average, 12-15 percent of total traffic fatalities in North Carolina.    “We’ve received a lot of support and positive attention for Watch for Me N.C.,” said Lauren A. Blackburn, director of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation Division. “People are glad to see that more is being done to educate the public about bicycle and pedestrian safety.”   
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10/30/2015: NCDOT Offers Halloween Safety Tips for Families and Motorists

NCDOT Offers Halloween Safety Tips for Families and Motorists

Posted 10/30/2015 8:49:51 AM

RALEIGH — The N.C. Department of Transportation wants to make sure all North Carolinians have a fun and safe Halloween. The Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation Division’s Watch for Me NC safety program urges motorists as well as parents and trick-or-treaters to stay alert and use caution this Halloween. More than 2,200 pedestrians are injured or killed in motor vehicle collisions in North Carolina each year, and more than a third of those collisions occur in the evening or at night. With less daylight during this time of year and the popularity of dark-colored costumes, this spooky holiday can quickly turn dangerous.  As thousands of children parade the streets on Oct. 31, NCDOT is offering these safety tips to help make this year’s Halloween safer and more enjoyable: For Parents Before children head out on their trick-or-treat rounds, parents should: Plan and discuss a safe route trick-or-treaters intend to follow and establish a return time. Instruct children to travel only in familiar areas and along the established route. Make sure that an adult or an older, responsible youth will be supervising the outing for children under age 12. Make sure your child carries a flashlight, glow stick or has reflective tape on their costume to make them more visible to cars. Let children know that they should stay together as a group if going out to trick-or-treat without an adult. Review all appropriate trick-or-treat safety precautions, including pedestrian/traffic safety rules. For Trick-Or-Treaters To have a safe Halloween adventure, trick-or-treaters should: Stay in familiar neighborhoods along the established route and stop only at familiar houses unless accompanied by an adult. Walk on sidewalks, not in the street. If there are no sidewalks, walk on the left side of the road, facing traffic. Cross streets at crosswalks when available. Look both ways before crossing streets and cross when the lights tell you to cross, after you check for cars in all directions. Carry a flashlight, wear clothing with reflective markings or tape, and stay in well-lit areas. Wear a watch you can read in the dark. Don't cut across yards or driveways. For Motorists Motorists should be especially alert on Halloween and should: Drive slowly through residential streets and areas where trick-or-treaters could be expected. Watch for children darting out from between parked cars. Watch for children walking on roadways, medians and curbs. Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully. At twilight and later in the evening, watch for children in dark clothing. About Watch for Me NC The Watch for Me NC program is a collaborative effort to reduce pedestrian and bicycle-related crashes through enhanced education and enforcement of safety laws. The program, which is being coordinated by a group of partners, including NCDOT, UNC Highway Safety Research Center, and many local communities, consists of pedestrian, bicycle and driver-focused safety messages as well as concerted efforts by area police to enforce relevant laws. To learn more about the program, visit http://watchformenc.org/.
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