Q: Why does Sound Transit charge senior citizens a higher bus fare than does King County Metro? During off-peak hours, seniors pay 25 cents...

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Q: Why does Sound Transit charge senior citizens a higher bus fare than does King County Metro? During off-peak hours, seniors pay 25 cents with King County Metro to travel through one zone and 50 cents with Sound Transit to travel through one zone. Would it not be more practical (and less confusing) for Metro and Sound Transit to agree on identical bus fares?

A: Sound Transit charges pretty much all riders more because it typically operates longer-haul bus routes than Metro and offers express service between major population areas, said Geoff Patrick, a Sound Transit spokesman.

Sound Transit bus fares for seniors (riders 65 and older) range from 50 cents to $1.50, depending on how many zones, or regions, the rider travels through. Metro charges seniors 25 cents to 50 cents, depending on the time of day they travel. Visit www.soundtransit.org or www.metrokc.gov/tran.htm for more information.

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It’s getting dark earlier and earlier these days as we close in on the winter solstice. Drivers, keep an eye out for pedestrians as you travel through crosswalks and intersections or turn corners.

Pedestrians, walkers and runners, ditch that false sense of security in the crosswalk and pay attention to your surroundings. Make eye contact, especially when crossing multiple lanes of traffic. And while black is always fashionable, consider wearing lighter colors or a reflector to become even more eye-catching. You really do want to see and be seen.

There were 13 pedestrian deaths in King County during November and December 2004 and last January. More than 100 pedestrians died after being hit by motor vehicles from 2000 to 2003, according to a report issued this year by Public Health — Seattle & King County. You may have the right of way by law, but that’s not going to protect your life.

Dear Reader

Got an Eastside traffic question? Send it to us by e-mail, east@seattletimes.com; by fax, 425-453-0449; by mail, The Seattle Times Eastside News Bureau, 1200 112th Ave. N.E., Suite C-145, Bellevue, WA 98004.

See them shine

Speaking of reflectors, people concerned about a lack of them along Preston-Fall City Road from Preston to 328th Way Southeast will be glad to know King County recently installed new reflectors, just in time for the rain and snow.

More on Interstate 405’s future

The state Department of Transportation (DOT) is holding an open house for those of you hankering for an update on road widening planned along I-405 from Southeast Eighth Street to Interstate 90 in Bellevue. DOT planners and engineers will present preliminary findings on how the project will affect the environment, Tuesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Bellevue Regional Library, 1111 110th Ave. N.E. Call Colleen Gants at 425-456-8555 for more information.

Early warning

Interstate 90: The Snoqualmie Pass highway remains one lane in each direction because of a rockslide last month, but the Department of Transportation expects only minimal delays this weekend. Motorists traveling west on Sunday might consider traveling before noon or after 6 p.m. to avoid moderate backups. Visit www.wsdot.wa.gov for updates.

Bellevue: I-90 car-pool lanes between 150th Avenue Southeast and the Interstate 405 interchange will see closures next week, westbound from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and eastbound Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Karen Gaudette: 206-515-5618 or kgaudette@seattletimes.com