Grants fund increased bike, pedestrian, and vehicle patrol in La - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

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Grants fund increased bike, pedestrian, and vehicle patrol in La Crosse

LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW) -The La Crosse Police Department believes some streets in the city are a concern to pedestrians and those on bike.

Two grants from the Department of Transportation will provide additional manpower to police those streets.

From 2008-2011 three pedestrians died in La Crosse.  That same number died in 2012 alone.

The city has safety concerns for areas on West Avenue, parts of La Crosse Street and 33rd Street among others.

Those areas are based on a 2012 study that looks at traffic volume and crash history.

La Crosse Police Lt. Pat Hogan says there is a lot of pedestrian traffic, especially around the three university areas.

Derek Wilson walks to school four days a week. He's a student at Western Technical College. He uses the crosswalk at 7th and Cass Street.

Derek said, "I'm not a big fan of this intersection. They [cars] try to beat the yellow lights which is a danger to pedestrians."

The grants will put three officers at intersections like 7th and Cass Street to enforce traffic laws.

Jackie Eastwood, Traffic Engineer, said, "A lot of times people don't know they're actually doing something wrong."

One officer will patrol on foot walking through intersections and the other two will be in patrol cars stopping those who violate the law.

Lt. Hogan emphasizes that "We don't want this to be a 'we're trying to catch people'. We want this to be an educational thing."

Reminding the public of the laws will hopefully lead to a safer commute.

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