More than 1,100 ticketed in 3 weeks for ‘blocking the box’

An APD officer pulls over a driver during "Don't Block the Box" enforcement.
An APD officer pulls over a driver during "Don't Block the Box" enforcement.

AUSTIN (KXAN) — More than 1,100 drivers have been ticketed in the last three weeks during the Austin Police Department’s initiative aimed at easing congestion on major downtown roadways.

Police ticketed 258 people for moving violations and 43 others for non-moving violations during the program’s third week, which ranged from April 29 and May 1. Just more than 800 drivers were ticketed during the first two weeks of the initiative.

Officers will be stationed at key intersections at peak travel times from 7-9 a.m. and 4-6:30 p.m.

Key intersections staffed with officers

  • Cesar Chavez and Guadalupe streets
  • Cesar Chavez and Lavaca streets
  • Cesar Chavez and Colorado streets
  • Cesar Chavez Street and Congress Avenue

Blocking the box means that a vehicle has entered an intersection without enough room on the other side of the intersection to clear it. Authorities said blocking the box causes traffic delays and safety concerns for pedestrians trying to use the crosswalk, and emergency vehicles navigating the roads.

Officers look for these behaviors interrupting the flow of traffic

  • Red light violations
  • Blocking intersections
  • Failure to stop at proper place
  • Failure to yield to pedestrians in crosswalk
  • Failure to yield to pedestrian control device
  • Driving in bus lanes
  • Reckless driving
  • Unsafe movements
  • Removing delivery trucks during peak times that block or interfere with traffic

Additional Don’t Block the Box signs will be put up around Austin in the coming weeks even though APD officers will not staff those intersections. APD will remain focused on the Cesar Chavez intersections until otherwise noted.

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