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Safe Pedestrian Practices in the Central Valley

In 2015, 1 out of every 5 children killed in a motor vehicle accident were pedestrians, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC. The elderly are also susceptible to serious injury and death as a pedestrian, as 19 percent of all pedestrians injured were aged 65 or older. No group of people is immune to injury when it comes to these types of accidents.

There are several things pedestrians can do to reduce their risk of injury or wrongful death. We’ve listed the safe pedestrian practices here. By implementing them anytime you are out on a walk, for whatever reason, you can help put yourself and your family at ease.

Avoid Distractions

Being able to hear what is going on around you is vital to staying safe as a pedestrian. If you hear a loud car speeding in your direction, you will be able to step off to the side. If something is headed toward you and someone yells to warn you, you need to be able to hear it. For this reason, it is best not to talk on the phone or listen to headphones while walking. This is especially true of those who jog and like to listen to music – it’s safer not to. Holding a conversation with others you are walking with is usually okay as long as you are still able to pay attention to your surroundings. Avoid drugs or alcohol while walking. It is difficult to pay attention to what’s happening around you when you are under the influence.

Obey Pedestrian Traffic Rules

Not only vehicle operators need to obey the rules of the road. As a pedestrian, you need to walk across the street in designated areas. If that designated area also has signs, obey those as well. These safety measures are in place to help reduce the number of pedestrian accidents, like the one you’re trying to avoid. Always be sure to walk on the sidewalk. If there isn’t one, walk well away from traffic. Never walk along major roads and highways.

Be Visible

If you are wearing a dark outfit and walking at night, it will be very hard for drivers to notice you. Be sure to wear light-colored clothing when walking at night and bright colors during the day. You may also want to invest in reflective clothing or devices you can attach to your clothing, backpack, shoes, etc., that will also help make you more visible. You can also be sure drivers have seen you and are going to stop for you by making eye contact.

Look Both Ways

Most of us learned as a child we need to look both ways before crossing the street. It is important to learn this safe pedestrian practice when young, but it’s also important not to forget it. This one tip can save countless lives. Drivers need to see you, but you also need to see them. You can’t do that unless you look both ways. You also shouldn’t assume just because you see one driver stop to let you walk by everyone else will stop as well.

By planning the walks you take and knowing where you will be and when, by avoiding busy streets and intersections and trying not to walk during peak traffic times, you can also up your chances of avoiding an accident. A pedestrian who isn’t being careful can increase their risk of injury or death due to a motor vehicle accident. Still, if you are involved in an accident, get help right away. Call Martin Gasparian at the Maison Law Firm. A consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer may help you get compensation for your injuries, lost wages and other benefits. Call us today.

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