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News Release

November 30, 2011

KING STREET INTERSECTION ONE OF HONOLULU'S MOST DANGEROUS ACCIDENT SITES
Numerous Accidents Prompt Communitywide Traffic Safety Event

Over the past two years, there have been more than 32 traffic-related automobile or pedestrian accidents in front of Washington Middle School at the intersection of King Street and Punahou Street, an average of more than one accident per month.

That's why Honolulu Police Department District 1 Community Policing Officers were joined by more than 50 Washington Middle School students and staff members along with Farmers Insurance Hawaii employees this morning, for a Farmers Hawaii Hot Spots sign-waving event. The traffic safety event served to remind drivers to obey speed limits, avoid driving distractions and watch out for pedestrians crossing streets.

According to Wenli Lin, Vice President for Farmers Insurance Hawaii, a student was hit by a car in late September while trying to cross busy King Street, and the intersection has several pedestrian and traffic issues.

"Students or pedestrians tend to jaywalk to cross King Street toward Washington Middle School, and dangerous traffic situations are made even worse with cars turning quickly from Punahou Street to King Street," Lin said. "This is clearly an intersection where pedestrians and motorists alike need to pay close attention and avoid driving distractions."

Lin added that the speed limit on Punahou Street is 25 miles per hour and on King Street is 30 miles per hour. The fine for speeding in a school zone is $297; not yielding to pedestrians carries fines of $130.

"Paying attention is a critical part of traffic safety, whether you are a driver or a pedestrian," Lin said. "Partnering with HPD and community groups, we want to remind people of the importance of being aware of your surroundings on busy city streets and driving with caution to help keep our streets safer for everyone."

The Farmers Insurance Hot Spots program was started in 2002 in response to increased accidents and fatalities due to speeding. Schools or concerned community members interested in holding a Hot Spots event in their neighborhood should contact Farmers Insurance Hawaii 808-544-3988.

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