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Keeping safe on VSU streets

          The VSUPD are concerned about crosswalk safety again.

          “Last year, we had several students receive jay-walking tickets from the city of Valdosta for not crossing properly,” Russell Mast, vice president for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, said. “I’m really hoping that students will walk on the lane all the time even when the walk sign is up.”

          There are eight crosswalks around main campus, and several of them are high-traffic areas for both pedestrians and motorists.

          “There are several busy crosswalks, but the one that really worries me is the crosswalk on Brookwood Drive in front of the Fine Arts building,” Sgt. Heidi Bertsch said. “This crosswalk doesn’t have caution lights and since it’s a four-lane road, it tends to get busy sometimes during 7 to 9 and 3 to 5 p.m. when people go to school and work.”

          According to Bertsch, the problem is that students are not paying attention as they cross the street.

          “You must look for your surrounding before crossing, and don’t go across with your phone in your hands,” Bertsch said. “The busiest crosswalk would be the one on North Oak Street in front of the Student Union. But that one is actually really safe because it goes with a light as long as students use it properly.”

          The VSUPD are requesting that the city setup more caution lights on crosswalks around campus. Brookwood is top of that list.

          But even where caution lights are clearly visible, pedestrians still cut across diagonally.

          “I usually cross on the crosswalk, but sometimes I do walk diagonally only if the walk sign is up,” Crystal Floyd, senior middle grades education major, said. “It’s just quicker to walk diagonally than walk all the way down to the crosswalk, then cross.”

          On the other hand, students feel a little nervous to cross even when the caution light is up.

          “They hardly ever change to walk and the drivers ignore the walkers,” Floyd said.

          The VSUPD encourage both pedestrians and drivers to pay attention to their surroundings whenever possible.

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