How to Stay Safe as a Pedestrian
While we use many different types of vehicles for transportation, most people use their feet at some point. As pedestrians, people are vulnerable to collisions with vehicles. And in 2018, the numbers report a 3% increase in pedestrian deaths, totaling over 6,000 deaths. Meanwhile, data shows that in 2017, a pedestrian was killed every 88 minutes in traffic crashes.
These pedestrian fatalities remind us why it’s important to practice certain safety tips to increase protection when navigating around the community sidewalks and streets.
Pedestrian Safety Basics
Follow the Road Rules
When everyone follows the rules of the street, whether observing signs and signals or following the general rules, other drivers or walkers will know what to expect from each other.
Walk on the Sidewalk
If there is a sidewalk, use it. The point of a sidewalk is to give pedestrians a safe place to walk alongside the road so that vehicles are less likely to hit them.
Face Oncoming Traffic
When no sidewalk is present, walk towards the traffic and maintain a safe distance from moving vehicles to the best of your ability. This ensures that you can see any vehicles that may come too close to you.
Keep Your Electronic Devices in Your Pocket
Don’t walk distracted. If you are unable to hear traffic, you may be vulnerable to being hit or hurt. Stay aware of your surroundings with your ears and your eyes. If you choose to listen to music, be sure to keep the volume down.
To cross the street, seek a crosswalk. This is where vehicles expect to see pedestrians crossing the street. If there’s no crosswalk, find a well-lit area where you have a good view of all traffic from all directions.
During the day, wear bright colors, and at night, choose reflective materials. This will help drivers to see you no matter what time of day it is.
Wait for the Crossing Signal
While you may be tempted to cross whenever you want at an intersection, the crosswalk signal is a tool meant to promote pedestrian safety. Wait for the signal to let you know when it’s your turn to cross and don’t begin to walk until you look in all directions.
Walk in a Group
A group of pedestrians is much easier to see than a solo walker. While it may not always be possible to walk with a group of people, it is safer to do so.
Teach Children Walking Safety
Children need to understand the risks of walking and sharing their neighborhoods with vehicles. Discuss the reasons for following the road rules, watching for cars, looking both ways, and the safest routes throughout your community.
Our society often forgets that rushing can be dangerous. Pedestrians may be focused on getting to work on time or meeting friends at a restaurant. But rushing can reduce the time that a pedestrian has to make a decision or may keep them from seeing an oncoming vehicle.
Pedestrian safety is important, but when an accident happens, you need to know what your legal options may be. At Carrillo & Carrillo, our goal is to give you legal solutions for every personal injury you may be suffering. Reach out to us today at firstname.lastname@example.org.