It Worked: Readers Take Over CDOT’s Victim-Blaming #SafetyStartsWithAllOfUs Campaign

Image: Twitter via @scmodstyle
Image: Twitter via @scmodstyle

Instead of making streets like Federal Boulevard (also known as highway 88) safer with proven physical interventions that calm traffic speeds, the Colorado Department of Transportation is trying to “educate” the carnage out of deadly city streets with a PR campaign (as usual).

It’s ridiculous that CDOT expects people walking and biking to bear the same responsibility on public streets as people operating multi-ton killing machines. So we asked you to flip the script — and you did.

Streetsblog readers from all over the country overwhelmed CDOT’s #SafetyStartsWithAllOfUs hashtag on Twitter. Here are some of the best responses:

Some of you took CDOT’s Day-Glo wardrobe requirements to the next level…

Some people used their firsthand experiences to combat CDOT’s faux safety message…

A quick search through the news of the day provides plenty of fodder too…

One Denver City Council member weighed in…

You all owned Colorado’s transportation department. Enjoy…

  • Daniel

    This warms my heart.

  • ax12yz

    Although I do find a lot of those pictures funny, I don’t quite get why there is so much ridicule for a sensible safety campaign?! Of cause this high-viz campaign alone is not enough and the various other measure that streetblogs and other walking/biking activist campaign for are desperately necessary. But that doesn’t make a campaign to make bikes and pedestrians more visible at night any less sensible. It is our (as bikers/pedestrians) own self interest to be as visible as possible, and wearing high-viz cloths is in our easy control to make us safer. So I always try and wear a high-viz vest (together with good bike lights) when out and about at night and recommend it to everyone else who cycles. I have been ridiculed by many of my friends and colleagues for wearing it, but I would rather be ridiculed than unsafe/hurt, and now at least I can tell them: “Hey, this is official cdot policy to wear it, no need to ridicule me… ;-)”. On the other hand, I have also had several RTD bus drivers now thank me for wearing the vest at unlit bus stopes, as it allowed them to see that someone is waiting at the bus stop further in advance. We don’t have to turn road safety into a “war” between cyclists/pedestrians and cars. I would suspect most of us here have also driven a car at night before, and so would benefit from not being surprised by a dark clothed pedestrian/cyclist suddenly appearing “out of nowhere” in ones headlights. We can all do our part to try and make life easier and safer while on the road.

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