Before getting behind a steering wheel and after parking a car, we all are pedestrians. And we are responsible for our safety on the road at all times, whether we’re behind the wheel or traveling as a foot passenger. Knowing the meaning of traffic signs, pavement markings, and basic road rules is our duty and keeps us safe when we’re on busy streets chasing our busy lives.
Oftentimes, accidents with cars and pedestrians are the fault of drivers, but often pedestrians jaywalk and cross the street with a red light or do nothing to make sure that their way is clear and just start walking in the middle of the block right in front of the bus! According to the NHTSA the number of people hit by cars is each year is measured in thousands.
To be safe and unharmed, follow the simple rules of the road and stay focused at all times.
– Always use the magic left-right-left rule. Look to the left, then to right, and then to the left again to make sure that there’s no oncoming traffic and that it’s safe to cross the street.
– Always walk on the street facing oncoming traffic. Needless to say you’d better walk on the sidewalk, if there is one.
– Be aware of the wide rear swing radius of buses and trucks.
– Cross streets at corners or in crosswalks. Cross where pedestrians are expected. Follow pedestrian signs and signals, always watching for traffic to ensure you are seen.
– At night, use a flashlight or wear reflective material on your shoes, cap, and jacket or on your arms or legs to reflect the car’s lights back to the driver and increase your visibility.
– And, probably the most important thing, stay focused at all the times and refrain from using electronics, especially while crossing the street.
– Only start crossing the street after you make sure that you are allowed to go. Do not blindly follow the person next to you.
– Avoid a run-in. The driver’s visibility may be limited due to blind spots. Always walk, and make sure that you are seen.
– Do not start crossing the street on a yellow light or on the last flashing second of the traffic light.
– If you are walking with children, hold their hands.
Another fact (and a warning): The most dangerous days for pedestrians are October 31st and January 1st.