GIG HARBOR, Wash. - Any pedestrian that asks for money from a driver in Gig Harbor in specific areas of the city could get in trouble with the law. But it's not just money that could land them behind bars, it's any interaction whatsoever.
Starting in early December, it will be illegal for pedestrians to ask drivers for money -- or even interact -- with a driver in certain parts of the city.
“It’s not targeting panhandling at all,” says police Chief Busey. “It’s traffic safety motivated.”
Busey says a third of all accidents in Gig Harbor happen either near the busy intersection of Olympic and Point Fosdick or at one of the city's eight roundabouts.
Under the ordinance, pedestrian interactions will be considered illegal between 200 and 500 feet from these busy traffic areas.
“The need to eliminate other distractions or other unpredictable behavior is what we are looking for,” says Busey.
This ordinance is set to take effect Dec. 5 and police say enforcement will be minimal. It's meant to be an educational tool to keep drivers and pedestrians safe.
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