Help drivers by being a safe pedestrian

Vulnerable road user

The World Health Organization, (WHO) reports that over 1.3 million people die each year as a result of road traffic crashes.  More than half of these deaths come from people who are NOT in the vehicle.  This means that regardless of the cause of the crash, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists are at a significantly higher risk of death or injury.

Let's focus on being a safe pedestrian.  A pedestrian cannot control the decisions of a driver, however intentional choices by the pedestrian can reduce their risks while walking along a roadway.


1.  Walk facing traffic.  Walking safely while facing the direction of traffic in the lane closest to you provides an extra layer of protection.  Being able to see potential dangers allows you a few extra moments to react in a way to protect yourself.  If your back is to the traffic you may not know what is approaching you until it is too late.


2.  Wear clothing that is more eye catching, especially at night.  If you have high visibility safety gear while walking or jogging along a road, drivers will more likely see you and know to give you the needed potective space.  Having reflective gear particularly at night will draw the light from the headlights to more effectively alert drivers of your presence.  


3.  Be alert!  Many today walk or excercize while listening to music.  Others are virtually attached to their devices and are not paying attention to their surroundings.  Make sure you can hear what is going on around you by only listening to music at a moderate level.  Look up!  If you are walking while using your handheld device be cautious.  Keep your eyes on what is in front of you and periodically look around to be aware of what other dangers you may approach.


While this is not an exhaustive list of safety reminders, we at NHSA believe proper safety education is a key factor in driving safely.  Please check out our driver education courses and take advantage of the benefits that come along with safe driving, and in this case, safe walking!

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