Walking from one place to another as an alternative to driving can be a good way to help the environment and get some needed exercise as well. However, just because you’re not driving a car doesn’t mean you shouldn’t worry about the other cars on the road. Drivers are usually focused on avoiding collisions with other cars and can miss noticing a small human making their way across the road. There are easy ways to prevent this scenario from happening, starting with awareness.
Being aware of one’s surroundings is an important feat to master, but in the case of being a pedestrian, the goal is to help others be aware of your position just as you are aware of theirs. Brightly colored clothes are the best garments to wear while walking; however, instead of a bright shirt and pants you can carry something with reflectors or wear a bright overcoat that can be stuffed into a bag upon arriving at your destination.
Small children have a tendency to allow their minds to wander and not pay attention to where they are going, especially if they are playing a game with friends or siblings. When walking as a group of pedestrians where moving cars are present, make sure the entire group is aware of each other’s position and knows how to avoid human-car contact. Keep an extra close eye on the kids, and hold them by their hands if necessary.
When crossing streets, be sure to use designated crossing areas instead of jay-walking. Jay-walking is dangerous because all the driver sees is a human suddenly popping out from the side and walking across the road in front of them. Since the driver did not expect it, they usually panic and slam on the breaks, or worse, may hit the person. These kinds of collisions keep many accident attorneys busy with personal injury cases.
Rules and laws are set in place to keep pedestrians safe, but it is up to the public to follow them. Pedestrian rules are fairly simple: stick to the sidewalk, use Ped Xing crosswalks, don’t jay walk, and so forth. But drivers will not always see pedestrians regardless of whether they are following the rules or not. That’s why it is important to always be extra alert as a pedestrian.