Everyone faces risks on the road, from commuters to cyclists to commercial drivers. Pedestrians, however, arguably face some of the greatest risks of all. They’re entirely exposed and can be seriously injured if they are hit by a vehicle, even a car traveling at a low speed.
As a pedestrian, consider the following tips to stay safe:
Be wary of drug and alcohol use
It’s not illegal to walk to a destination after you’ve been drinking. After all, it’s better than getting behind the wheel of a car and driving. But it is still risky for walkers under the influence of alcohol or drugs to be present around roads with vehicles driving every which way. Alertness is dulled and making split second decisions is more difficult.
Use crosswalks if you can
There are many roads without crosswalks, but those roads tend to involve less chaotic traffic. If you are a pedestrian, opt to use a crosswalk if you see one. Drivers are much more likely to be aware of walkers using a crosswalk than those simply crossing the street, particularly at night-time.
Avoid using headphones
Headphones are problematic because they block too much of the sound from around you. If you’re listening to a podcast or song while you’re walking, you’re likely unable to hear an approaching vehicle or horn. Without this advance warning, you may not have time to react in the event of a collision with a car.
If you run, face traffic
For joggers, which side of the street is optimal? Running on the right with the flow of traffic, or running on the left facing traffic? The latter is the safest bet. This is because runners can spot dangerous drivers approaching if they need to jump out of the way. If a jogger runs with traffic, their back it turned and they may not spot a dangerous driver quick enough.
What if this isn’t enough to keep you safe?
These is no guarantee that a pedestrian will be 100 percent safe when they walk amongst motor vehicles. But for those who are seriously injured in a one-off situation, recourse options are available to help with medical bills and other expenses associated with the accident. An experienced legal advocate can help with the process.