CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Department of Transportation spokesman Scott Ishikawa showed yellow flags handed out yesterday at the Hawaii Convention Center as part of the Walk Wise Hawaii pilot project.
State project flies yellow flags for pedestrian safety
Isle residents will soon see bright yellow flags being waved by pedestrians at crosswalks.
The state Department of Transportation and AAA Hawaii launched the Walk Wise Hawaii pilot project yesterday at the First Hawaiian Auto Show at the Hawaii Convention Center.
"These flags are part of an ongoing effort to remind both motorists and pedestrians of the important role we all play in ensuring the safety of pedestrians," Brennon Morioka, interim state transportation director, said in a news release.
He said the flags will create more awareness by pedestrians and remind motorists to watch for pedestrians and "allow them to cross the street as required by law."
"We do want to emphasize that the flags are not a guarantee of a safe crossing," Morioka said, stressing pedestrians still must be alert and use properly marked crosswalks when crossing streets.
Three pedestrians have died after being hit by cars on Oahu roads this year.
The department's pedestrian safety display at the auto show features oversize hanging slippers representing pedestrian deaths. The first 100 people to walk through the display in the lobby received Walk Wise Hawaii flags.
Free flags will be available for pedestrians at the AAA Hawaii office, 1130 N. Nimitz Highway, or by calling AAA Hawaii at 593-2221 on Oahu and (800) 726-2886 from the neighbor islands.
"We are very happy to help distribute these flags, and we sincerely hope to see pedestrians vigorously waving them at crosswalks to draw visibility and attention to themselves," said Richard Velazquez, AAA Hawaii regional manager.