Pedestrians do not have anything to protect them if they are struck by a motor vehicle, which means they may suffer serious injuries during an accident. Unfortunately, this happens far too often in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that over 4,700 pedestrians are killed every year, and another 156,000 suffer nonfatal injuries. How can you protect yourself while walking on the streets? Follow these safety tips for pedestrians:
Don’t make any assumptions.
Even if a vehicle is supposed to stop to allow you to cross in front of them, you should never assume that the driver will stop. If you notice the driver is beginning to slow down as he approaches the intersection, you shouldn’t assume that he will come to a complete stop. He could be slowing down to prepare to turn or he could be distracted by something such as a cell phone. Protect yourself by never making any of these assumptions when walking.
Pedestrians should make an effort to stay visible at all times. If you are walking outside during daylight hours, wear brightly colored clothing that will make it easier for drivers to see you. However, if you are out at night, you should wear light colored or reflective clothing that will grab drivers’ attention. Be mindful of where you walk, too. Try to avoid walking in the shadows where a driver may not see you. If you want to confirm that a driver sees you before walking in front of his car, make eye contact with him.
Distracted walking can be just as dangerous as distracted driving, so put away anything that could take your attention off of the road. Even wearing headphones is a bad idea if you want to stay safe while walking. If you are wearing headphones, you may not hear a driver honking at you to warn you to get out of the way or another pedestrian trying to warn you of danger. Stay alert as you walk to protect yourself from harm.
Stay on the sidewalk.
If a sidewalk is available, you should always use it. If there is no sidewalk for you to walk on, then stay as far to the side of the road as possible. Always walk facing traffic so you can quickly react to cars that are coming your way.
Even if you follow all of these safety tips, it’s possible that you will still be involved in a pedestrian accident. If you are injured in a pedestrian accident caused by a negligent driver, contact Reisch Law Firm today to discuss your legal options. Call our law office at 303-291-0555 or fill out this online form to schedule a free consultation regarding your case.