Run, Forest! RUN! A Warning to Runners!

by Doug Zanes | Last Updated: March 18, 2015

Believe it or not, tickets are being handed out to runners who do not use the sidewalk.

In fact, a Tucson man says he was handed a $90 citation!

If a sidewalk exists and it is accessible to you, the Tucson Police are now saying you need to be on it. In fact. under Arizona law it’s illegal to run on the street, beside the sidewalk.

The man that was cited explained that he was doing nothing wrong; he was simply running in one direction with distracting anyone around him.

Last Friday, around three in the afternoon the Tucsonan ran past a Tucson officer, in a parked police cruiser.

“He yelled out his window at me, that I needed to be on the sidewalk. I honestly thought he was joking and I laughed,” said the native who has covered 37,000 miles of Tucson streets since 1980.

The 52 year old says he was unaware he was breaking any law. He emphasized that he was nearly hugging the curb, no more than a foot off the curb.

The avid runner kept running and so the police cruiser followed and offered up a $90 citation.

Police spokesperson Officer Kristopher Goins says, “In Arizona, under revised statute 28-796 states that an individual has to utilize a sidewalk when there’s one provided, rather than running in the street, and that’s for their safety.”

In 2014 Tucson Police cited 203 pedestrians for walking on the street, when a sidewalk was available. Ninety people received warnings.

So far in 2015, 33 tickets have been issued, along with 20 warnings.

“Our intention is to educate and protect the public,” said Officer Kristopher Goins.

It’s beginning to look like the chances for a higher paying ticket is with running not driving!

Regardless fellow Tucsonans, we wish for you to be safe and we do advocate that all walkers, runners, joggers and wanders remain on the sidewalk when one is available and accessible.

As personal injury lawyers, we hear about a lot of different types of car accidents that result in injuries. We also hear about many car accidents that involve pedestrians. Auto accidents involving pedestrians can result in some of the most severe injuries due to the amount of impact.

Our advice? Enjoy the run and stay safe… on the sidewalk!

Doug Zanes: Founding Attorney Raised in Douglas, Arizona, and went to college at Arizona State University and graduated from law school at St. Mary’s University School of Law in Texas. Doug began practicing law in Phoenix Arizona in 1997.
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