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City Hall in La Crosse declares “White Cane Safety Day” for blind pedestrians

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La Crosse is taking time to recognize the needs of the vision-impaired, by declaring today as White Cane Safety Day. 

Mayor Mitch Reynolds met Friday morning with a group of local residents who are blind or impaired at City Hall to make the declaration. 

MTU director Adam Lorentz was present at the event, and announced a new phone app which will help blind passengers ride the bus system, by vocally announcing where a bus is located at any time on its route.    

Drivers are cautioned to stop at least 10 feet away if a pedestrian with a guide dog or a white cane is crossing the street.   

Rhonda Staats serves on the city disability board, and she has experienced cars stopping too close while she was at a crossing.

“Whenever we feel the heat of a car’s engine, we definitely understand that the car is too close for comfort and safety,” she says.

Staats says she’s proud of the city’s efforts to improve pedestrian safety, but thinks there’s still a long way to go.  

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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