Ask Axios: Blowing off traffic-flaggers has risks
Tempting though it may be to ignore traffic flaggers in a city with unending construction — especially when you're running late — it's both perilous and, according to state law, illegal.
What to know: Construction flaggers are trained in skills, including how to use STOP/SLOW paddles and red flags, and certified in state-approved courses. They should be thought of as having a limited commission, like school crossing guards, said Capt. Tim Meyer of the King County Sheriff's Office.
Yes, and: Failure to obey could result in a misdemeanor and a $1,000 fine.
However, construction flaggers are not authorized to write tickets or pull people over, said Meyer, and truthfully most violators are not punished unless caught in the act by a law enforcement officer.
What they're saying: "Flaggers are there for everyone's safety," said Ethan Bergerson of the Seattle Department of Transportation. "It's not just the law, it's the right thing to do."
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