In mid-August, a 15-year-old pedestrian was struck by a vehicle and killed in Hebron, Maryland. The teen reportedly ran into the street, stumbled, and fell before being hit by the vehicle. If you are someone who often walks places, there are several things you can do avoid being in an accident with a vehicle.
- Use sidewalks when they are available. When sidewalks are unavailable, walk along the side of the road toward traffic. While you should stay as close to the edge of the road as possible, it is also important to avoid weaving between parked vehicles. Drivers may not see you.
- Whenever possible, avoid walking after dark. If you need to walk after dark, wear bright clothing. Reflective clothing as well as using a flashlight or another device that will make you more visible may also be helpful.
- Bright, reflective clothing may also make it easier for drivers to see you during a storm, when it is foggy, or when visibility is otherwise reduced.
- Never assume a driver has seen you. Even if a driver has stopped, make eye contact to make sure the driver knows you plan to cross the street. Be extra careful if it is dark outside or if the roads are slick.
- Never dart in front of a vehicle. The driver may not see you or may be unable to stop before hitting you.
- Pay attention while walking. While people often talk about driving distractions, pedestrians may also become distracted, particularly by cell phones. A distracted walker may unintentionally wander into traffic.
- Use crosswalks when they are available. When crossing at an intersection with a pedestrian light, wait for the light to tell you it is your turn. Even when crossing at an intersection with a light, look both ways before crossing the street. Sometimes drivers, who are in a hurry, may go out of turn.
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