Iowa State University
INDEX A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

News Service

News Service:

Annette Hacker, director,
(515) 294-3720

Office: (515) 294-4777

9-27-05

Contacts:

Deborah Larkin, ISU Police, (515) 294-4428

Annette Hacker, News Service, (515) 294-3720

Why will the chicken cross the road at Iowa State?

AMES, Iowa -- It isn't every day you encounter a six-foot chicken on campus...

... with its own security detail...

...crossing Pammel Road at 8 a.m.

If you were to crow about it, classmates and coworkers would surely cluck in disbelief.

Not so fast, say Iowa State University Police.

On Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 28 and 29, look for a larger-than-life chicken to cross the road at some of the busiest intersections on the Iowa State campus, at some of the busiest times of the day. The chicken will be joined by ISU Police officers who will share safety messages with the university community.

No, the chicken doesn't talk.

The "chicken-crossing-the-road" campaign is all part of an idea hatched by ISU Police Lt. Deborah Larkin and Sgt. Liz Gries to get motorists to pay attention and yield to pedestrians in the crosswalks. It's an important safety initiative on the largely pedestrian ISU campus, where approximately 32,000 people and several thousand cars mingle every day.

The tongue-in-beak silliness of it all is to get drivers' attention. Too often they are fatigued, distracted, hurried, or just not paying attention to people in the crosswalks, Larkin said.

"We're not doing this in reaction to pedestrian and vehicle accidents; rather, we're trying to get ahead of this and raise awareness of the law," Larkin said. "State law requires that motorists yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk."

It's also a bit of a lesson in courtesy, she added.

"Typically, pedestrians standing on the curb get frustrated when vehicles won't stop. If pedestrians aren't in a crosswalk, drivers aren't required to stop for them -- but it's the courteous and safe thing to do."

Statewide, there were 93 major injury pedestrian accidents last year, according to the Iowa Department of Transportation.

Chicken crossing

Look for the chicken crossing the road at the following times:

Wednesday, Sept. 28

8 to 9 a.m.Pammel Drive between Bissell and Stange

11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.Union Drive

Thursday, Sept. 29

8 to 9 a.m.Beach Road and Wallace Road

11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.Osborn Drive

3:30 to 4:30 p.m.Bissell between Union and Osborn

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Quote

"Typically, pedestrians standing on the curb get frustrated when vehicles won't stop. If pedestrians aren't in a crosswalk, drivers aren't required to stop for them -- but it's the courteous and safe thing to do."

Police Lt. Deborah Larkin