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Grand Forks upgrades crosswalk lights

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GRAND FORKS - The first day of school is just around the corner.

Police are asking parents to talk about some new safety features installed for kids.

Crossing the street can be dangerous for small children.

"The rate of traffic is so high before and after school,” said Mother, Danielle Bollman.

Crosswalks around Grand Forks, like one in front of Lewis and Clark Elementary School, have some flashy new lights.

"Parents are often in a rush picking up kids so it's nice to have a extra layer of safety,” said Bollman.

Last school year -- the lights would blink whether or not someone tried crossing the street.

"Typically would've been before school after school usually during a midday break,” said Lt. Jeremy Moe, with the Grand Forks Police Department.

But city engineers have installed a more interactive change, they only flash when the button is pushed.

"You know that there is going to be somebody in that crosswalk or about to cross in that crosswalk,” said Lt. Moe.

The city's engineering department won't say how much the new push buttons cost.

But they're now online at seven intersections near schools around Grand Forks.

As the first day of school creeps closer, police say drivers need to be on the lookout for walkers, bikers and joggers.

"Even though my kids are younger we still talk about crossing safety and looking twice and since my kids are young , never crossing alone,” said Bollman.

Police have one main tip they tell children. 

"To look left, look right, look left again. We want them to make sure they're safe to cross,” said Lt. Moe.

"I appreciate the lights and I think having a push button is a good idea," said Bollman.

Lights that could save a life.

Here’s a list of where the intersections are installed:

-13th Ave. S. and S. 11th St.

-17th Ave. S. and Baron Blvd.

-17th Ave. S. and Rider Rd.

-20th Ave. S. and S. 34th St.

-34th Ave. S. and S. 32nd St.

-40th Ave. S. and S. 32nd St.

-47th Ave. S. and Cherry St.