Ways Pedestrians Can Stay Safe

Stopping, looking and listening may seem as if they’re enough to keep you safe while crossing the street, but modern driving distractions and automobile dangers have made it so that pedestrians have to go the extra mile to remain safe. While turning to legal professionals like Tully Rinckey PLLC can help if you’re ever involved in an accident, it’s best to take steps to prevent an incident from happening in the first place.

Know and Follow the Rules

Using your eyes and ears are definitely essential when it comes to being a safe pedestrian, but so is using your mind. Always walk on sidewalks when they are available. At times, when they aren’t, it’s best that you walk as far to the left as possible while facing oncoming traffic. Being able to see cars as they come toward you can help alleviate any anxiety you may feel upon hearing a car come up behind you but not knowing whether the driver sees you. You also want to use crosswalks when they’re available.

Make Yourself Visible

Just as daytime or running lights are designed to make cars more visible, you can take similar steps as a pedestrian. It’s best to weary brightly colored clothing while walking in the day and reflective clothing if you’re walking at night. Look for well-lit areas when crossing the street, and try to make eye contact with drivers before stepping into the road so that you know for a fact that they see you.

Avoid Distracted Walking

Just because you’re walking doesn’t mean you can talk on the phone and text. Put conversations on hold and lower your phone when you’re crossing the street. Failing to do so could result in an accident, one where both you and the driver may be found equally at fault. Imagine that you’re looking down at your phone tapping out a text as you’re crossing the street while there’s a motorist who’s doing the same thing while driving towards you. That is not a good combination.

Learn How to Walk Defensively

In addition to walking without distraction, you should also learn to walk defensively. This means doing your best to anticipate what a driver may do at an intersection and while pulling into and out of parking spots and parking lots. You’re better off pretending that drivers don’t see you until they acknowledge you with a hand signal or by slowing down or braking for you. Also, be sure that you give drivers extra time to slow down and stop, especially when the weather makes visibility poor or it’s nighttime. You may easily see a car coming at you in the rain, but if a car has windshield wipers that need to be replaced, the driver may not be able to see you clearly. Should the driver’s poor vision result in an accident, talking with Tully Rinckey lawyers could help you determine whether you have a case.

Walk Sober

You most certainly should not get behind the wheel after drinking, but walking while intoxicated has its own dangers as well. Alcohol slows your reflexes and may make it difficult for you to tell how fast a car is going or what it’s doing, oversights that can easily result in an accident, or worse. Avoid drinking if you know you’ll be walking near or on public roads and streets. Depending on where you live, you could have ridesharing services that you can use to get to your destination safely. While public transportation is most certainly an option, it’s still likely that you’ll be crossing the street.

Walking is a great way to get in some exercise and to do your part to cut down on the amount of emissions that can harm the ozone layer. That said, you still need to remain fully alert and knowledgeable as a pedestrian.