Pedestrian Safety Sting

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Wednesday night was Round Two of a crackdown in Sparks…involving drivers who don’t yield to pedestrians. Police say this crackdown is necessary to educate drivers, and a hefty fine is used to get their point across.

A law enforcement officer walked back and forth across Pyramid Way in Sparks Wednesday afternoon…to see how many people would slow down or stop. Many of those who didn’t got tickets…but some say, it’s a steep penalty.

The price of a ticket for not stopping for a pedestrian, in this case…an officer in plain clothes? One-hundred-and-ninety-five dollars.

Washoe County Sheriff’s Department Sergeant Mike Gross says they made roughly 30 traffic stops, and issued around 20 citations.

While some drivers left were given only warnings, the state office that funds the program actually says it doesn’t require citations be written.

And some say, a ticket isn’t fair…and that police should consider just who is driving.

But police say with 58 pedestrians injured and two fatalities in Sparks last year…something needs to be done to educate drivers.

One of the program’s unlikely supporters? A man who did receive a ticket…and says he also received a valuable lesson.

Some of the $195 fine for failing to yield to a pedestrian goes to the state, and some goes to the local municipality.

Authorities say typically 30 to 40 citations are written during each of these operations.

Joe Harrington, KOLO 8 News