Ja’dia Dixon wins MnDOT pedestrian safety coloring contest
DULUTH, Minn. — Seven-year-old Ja-dia Dixon of Duluth has won a pedestrian safety coloring contest sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, District 1.
“Ja’dia really took his time coloring”, said his mother Barbara Dixon. “The contest was a good opportunity to teach him how to safely cross at the flashing beacons on Grand Avenue. It also teaches him that hard work is rewarding.”
The contest was part of an advertising campaign to educate motorists and pedestrians about the new flashing warning lights that are being installed in Duluth and around the state.
Five of the new systems, designed with the latest technology, were recently installed on Highway23/Grand Avenue in West Duluth. If used correctly the systems improve safety for pedestrians crossing roadways.
The systems feature flashing strobes that activate when a button is pushed by pedestrians. This lets drivers know that a pedestrian is attempting to cross the road.
“This seems simple,’ said Jim Miles, MnDOT District 1 Traffic engineer. “But we have observed many pedestrians who don’t push the button before crossing. We have also observed many motorists that don’t seem to understand that they must stop when they see that the strobes are flashing.”
Miles hopes that the advertising campaign and other public outreach efforts will help people understand their roles in the new system.
The coloring sheets were distributed during a community event held at WADE stadium in Duluth, in late-August. Entries were judged on the basis of neatness, creativity, age, and ability.
Ja’dia was rewarded a MnDOT hard hat and a framed first place certificate. “I am so excited I won”, he said “I will never forget to push the button when I cross.”
MnDOT wants to thank all who entered.
For more information about flashing warning lights visit www.mndot.gov/d1/.