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Vulnerable road users focus of April traffic blitz in Sask.

April's traffic safety spotlight in Saskatchewan aims to make roads safer for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists.
April's traffic safety spotlight in Saskatchewan aims to make roads safer for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists. File / Global News

REGINA – Spring has arrived and people are out walking, jogging and pedaling on Saskatchewan roads. Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) and police believe this is a good time as any for province-wide traffic spotlight aimed at making travel safer for everyone, especially the most vulnerable users.

SGI is asking motorists to share the road with pedestrians, bicycles and motorcycles so everyone can make it home safely.

“Pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists are called vulnerable road users because they are just that – vulnerable,” said SGI President and CEO Andrew Cartmell.

“Compared to a car, they have little or no protection if they’re involved in a crash. That makes them more likely to be hurt or even killed, and that’s why it’s so important to be aware of them now that the weather is warming up and they are more prevalent on our roads.”

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SGI officials say 14 pedestrians, six motorcyclists and two bicyclists were killed in collisions during 2013. Another 678 were injured.

READ MORE: SGI hands out over 200 tickets for distracted driving in February

Throughout the month, police will be looking for jaywalkers, bicyclists not following the rules of the road and motorcyclists not wearing proper gear. They will also be targeting motorists who don’t yield to pedestrians and driving without due care and attention around bicycles and motorcycles.

“As a driver, scan the road ahead for pedestrians, look twice before turning and keep a safe following distance between your vehicle and any bicycles or motorcycles in front of you,” said Cartmell.

SGI is also asking pedestrians to try to make eye contact with motorists before stepping out into traffic and riders on bikes to wear reflective clothing to see seen better and faster during slit-second decisions on streets.

This is the first month-long traffic spotlight of its kind in Saskatchewan.