SDOT Safety Ambassadors have been out on the First Hill Streetcar line since last weekend to help community members navigate the Streetcar line which had its soft launch last Saturday. The language-capable ambassadors (English, Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Amharic, Tigrinya, and Spanish) have been ready to provide information about how the streetcars operate and share streetcar safety tips.
The ambassadors highlighted some key safety tips that everyone should know:
- Streetcars are quiet, but may sound bells and horns
- There are no fences or barriers separating the streetcars
- Drivers should be prepared to stop behind streetcars
- Streetcars cannot swerve to avoid obstacles as they run on tracks
- Streetcars sometimes have their own traffic signals and can cross the street when other vehicles cannot
- Cyclists should cross streetcar tracks at a right angle to avoid falling
While the ambassadors were primarily there to discuss safety, they were also able to talk about other aspects of the new Streetcar and answer any questions. Many people were happy to learn that they could take the Streetcar for free until the official launch still to be announced.
The First Hill Streetcar operates from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Saturday and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
There are 10 stops on the First Hill Streetcar line, connecting the diverse and vibrant residential neighborhoods and business districts of of Capitol Hill, First Hill, Yesler Terrace, Central Area, Chinatown, Japantown and Pioneer Square, while also serving major medical centers (Swedish Medical Center and Harborview Medical Center), institutions of higher learning (Seattle Central College and Seattle University) and major sporting event venues (CenturyLink & Safeco Field).
Here’s our “Streetcar 101” Blog Video featuring SDOT Rail Transit Manager Ethan Melone from last month.