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April 10, 2013

Purdue police urge pedestrian and bicycle caution, courtesy as busy spring arrives

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University police are again reminding the campus community to be vigilant and keep bicycle and pedestrian safety in mind as the weather warms and more people head outside.

Strategically placed crosswalks and bicycle paths are located on and around campus, and Purdue police want people to use them instead of crossing streets at improper places. Police can warn or cite pedestrians and joggers for jaywalking and cyclists for not obeying roadway and sidewalk laws.

"Like any large campus and urban area, we have such a large mix of traffic - from motorists to cyclists to walkers and joggers - that it is vital that we all work together to ensure safety," said Purdue police Capt. Eric Chin. "Motorists are required to yield to pedestrians. But just because a pedestrian is using a crosswalk, he or she cannot simply assume a vehicle driver sees them and is going to stop."

Chin says bicyclists also must know campus guidelines and laws and be courteous. Cyclists should ride at a slow pace and not weave around people in crowded areas. Rather, they should walk the bike until they're clear of the crowd.

Cyclists are subject to the same laws as vehicles, which includes not riding the wrong way on one-way streets or disregarding traffic lights and stop signs. Bikes also should have the proper equipment, such as headlights and taillights, and cyclists are encouraged to wear helmets and visible clothing.

Bicycles may be ridden on designated drives and bike paths but not on sidewalks unless otherwise posted.

The university requires that bicycles on university property be registered with the Purdue Police Department. Registration is free and is valid for five years. Details on bicycle registration are available at http://www.purdue.edu/police/programs/forms/bikeregistration.htm. Bike owners can pick up a sticker at the police department, 205 S. Martin Jischke Drive.

West Lafayette city residents must register their bikes with city police.

Writer: Jim Bush, 765-494-2077, jsbush@purdue.edu

Contact: Eric Chin, 765-494-8221