Five Ways to Share the Road Safely
In 2017 nearly 6,000 bicyclists and motorcyclists lost their lives when they collided with vehicles. Also in that year, almost the same number of pedestrians were killed in vehicle collisions.
The good news is that each of us can do our share to make the roads safer. So, whether you’re a pedestrian, biker, or the driver of a vehicle, you can take steps to ensure that your trips are as safe as possible for you and for those that share the road with you.
As a walker
Pedestrians might think they’re traveling at a slow enough speed to be easily seen, and thus avoid vehicle collisions. However, drivers will be traveling faster, and they may be distracted. When crossing the street, look for vehicles before you take a step onto the asphalt. Don’t assume that the driver has seen you—wait for the vehicle to stop before stepping out in front of it. Be aware of any drivers that are passing another vehicle. They might be paying more attention to the vehicle they're passing than to pedestrians in the crosswalk.
As a bicyclist
As a bicyclist, you’re on the smallest type of vehicle, which puts you at risk on the road. However, there are ways you can protect yourself. Avoid making unpredictable movements. Make sure you’re completely visible to other vehicles by wearing bright clothing, and at night make sure your bicycle is equipped with lights.
As a motorcyclist
Remember to signal for turns and lane changes. Drivers might not see you well when you’re in an intersection and they may find it hard to gauge how fast you’re traveling. This can interfere with their ability to calculate how much room to leave.
As the driver of a car
Never share a lane with a motorcycle. Remember, motorcycles take up more room than bicycles and travel at higher speeds. They need their own space. Allow plenty of space when passing a motorcycle or bicycle.
As the driver of a large vehicle
If you’re pulling a boat, driving an RV, or working on a big rig, there are many points you need to remember to keep yourself and others safe. As you pass smaller vehicles, you may create air turbulence that can push other vehicles away from you or pull them in. So, when possible, make sure you keep your distance from other vehicles.