NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - New Hanover County has been accepted into a program aimed to increase the safety of drivers, pedestrians and bikers.
The "Watch for Me NC" program is a state D.O.T. program that provides educational materials and also trains law enforcement officials how to better regulate traffic violators. The program will address safety concerns involving pedestrians, drivers and cyclists and will teach people how to respect different modes of transportation.
With more than 2,000 bike and pedestrian accidents in New Hanover County in the last 15 years, the county wanted the program to help with education and accident prevention.
County planner Karyn Crichton, led the application process and said she is thrilled to be in the program.
"I'm really excited about the WATCH for ME NC campaign. In New Hanover County, we have high crash rates for cyclist and pedestrian crashes," Crichton explained. "We're in the top ten statewide, so this campaign aims to address that and reduce crash rates."
"Watch for Me NC" will kick off in the county in August with public education activities informing pedestrians, cyclists and drivers about sharing the roadway. Police enforcement activities are set to start in the late fall.
"All three not just drivers, so we want to educate pedestrians and cyclists about their responsibilities when you're using the roadways and sharing the roadways," Crichton said.
New Hanover County is partnering with the city of Wilmington, the beach communities, UNCW and the town of Leland to for the "Watch for Me NC" program.
Crichton said communities and organizations that are interested in partnering with the program can contact her at KCrichton@nhcgov.com.