KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
March 26, 2021
By Natalie Cook Clark
Pedestrian and bicycle safety remains a priority for local law enforcement, and potential dangers include area school zones and the safety of thousands of children. This morning, a pedestrian was struck by a vehicle and killed on the Katy freeway feeder road at Fry Road - another reminder of the dangers for everyone on the road.
Deputies to Crack Down on School Zone Speeding
The safety of local students remains a priority for Katy law enforcement. Starting this week, Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office deputies will issue citations to anyone driving 5 mph or more over the speed limit in an active, labeled school zone driving area.
“Please let your deputies know that the Sheriff has received several compliments from citizens on our school zone enforcement,” states the email sent out to the department.
Drivers should always be aware and careful of students even when outside of the school zone. In January, a Katy ISD student was struck by a vehicle on his bike when riding to Beckendorff Junior High.
While not in an active school zone at the time of the accident, the event is a good lesson for both drivers and students to always remain aware.
“Unfortunately, most crashes involving kids on bicycles or as pedestrians are caused by kids who ride or step out when they shouldn’t have,” says Fort Bend County Precinct 3 Constable Chad Norvell.
Norvell’s son was hit by a car when he was five years old.
“It was his fault,” Constable Norvell recalls. “Parents must stress to kids that they should never trust a driver has seen them and will stop. Don’t begin to cross until the car has stopped and be sure to check the next lane over.”
Often times, when a car stops, the vehicles in the next lane cannot see the bike rider or walker in the crosswalk.
Katy ISD Educates Students
Katy ISD educates students on bike safety to increase their awareness to prevent accidents near and away from school. Corporal Frederick Evans with the Katy ISD Police Department gives presentations to elementary and junior high schools students on bike safety:
Rules Explained During Bike Safety Presentation:
· Obey signs and signals
· Always look over your shoulder for oncoming traffic before swerving or turning left.
· Stay close to the side of the road.
· Follow the same direction of the traffic.
· Use hand/arm signals to let drivers know what you are doing.
· Always yield the right-of-way
Graphic used in Corporal Evans' school presentation.
Wearing a Helmet is the Law
Since 2014, Texas law has required anyone under the age of 18 to wear a helmet when riding a bike. Bike riders and their parents should ensure that helmets fit properly.
From January 1, 2020 - March 15, 2021 there have been 57 bike vs. vehicle accidents in Fort Bend County. One crash resulted in a fatality.
Harris County Precinct 5 Enforce Traffic Laws
Harris County Precinct 5 has been busy lately enforcing traffic laws and keeping residents safe.
During St. Patrick’s Day, spring break, and the TX2K21 Racing Event, deputies with Harris County Precinct 5 Constable Ted Heap’s Office and their partners made more than 200 arrests for racing, reckless driving, drunk driving, deadly conduct, and other felonies.
Precinct 5 deputies alone made nearly 400 stops leading to 19 arrests as part of the TX2K21 Operation Black Flag Traffic Initiative. The initiative targeted street racers and drunk drivers.
Pedestrian Hit and Killed this Morning
Today, around 6:10 a.m., a pedestrian was struck by a vehicle and killed on a feeder lane of the Katy Freeway near Fry Road. The Houston Police Department is investigating the deadly incident, reinforcing the ongoing dangers for pedestrians and bicyclists on the roads.