Spring is in the air; the sun is shining and everything is green- a perfect time to spend more time outside and walking. With more people out and about, it’s a perfect time to review pedestrian safety! We all know pedestrians have the right of way, and that motorists need to be aware of them; however, it’s equally important as a pedestrian to practice defensive walking. Defensive walking means being aware of your surroundings at all times and eliminating risks while doing so. Brush up on some defensive tips, and then get out there and enjoy some beautiful weather!
- When walking, make sure to always cross the street in designated crossing areas, and always follow the walk/don’t walk signals rather than the traffic signals. Make sure you still pay attention to traffic while you’re crossing- don’t assume cars will follow the traffic signals.
- Walk on the sidewalk whenever possible. If there is no sidewalk, it’s safest to walk facing oncoming traffic, so you can easily see the cars and what they’re doing.
- Always wear bright or reflective clothing and bring a flashlight when going for night walks to increase your visibility.
- Avoid using your phone or other devices while walking. Devices are distracting and take the focus off what’s going on around you, greatly increasing the risk of getting injured.
- Make eye contact with drivers when crossing busy streets- this lets you know they see you and makes the driver more aware that you are crossing.
- Avoid wearing hats or hoods that obscure your vision. Make sure you’re able to see any obstacles that you may encounter!
- Be cautious when walking near driveways; it can be hard for drivers to see when they’re backing out of the driveway. If someone is backing out, it’s safest to stop and allow them to go, rather than assume they see you.