Parts of New York are great for walking, which is beneficial to those who would rather not drive and those who simply cannot afford a car. That said, being a pedestrian does not come without its risks.
The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center provides safety tips for pedestrians. Even experienced pedestrians should refresh themselves on the best ways to stay safe.
Drivers are more distracted than ever, which means that those on foot have to make an extra effort to make themselves visible. Reflective materials and brightly colored clothing help drivers see pedestrians, and the same is true of crossing where there is plenty of street light. At night, using a smartphone flashlight while crossing also helps alert drivers to pedestrians.
Learn defensive walking
As noted by Tufts University’s Department of Public and Environmental Safety, those on foot should walk defensively. This means paying close attention to pedestrian signals rather than traffic signals when crossing the street. Those traveling on foot should also remain alert in parking lots, as drivers backing out of parking spots may not see people walking behind their vehicle. The same applies when navigating driveways and alley entrances. For times when sidewalks are not available, walking along the edge of the road while facing traffic is the next best option.
Basic safety tips go a long way when it comes to pedestrian safety. For instance, looking both ways before crossing the street is essential, and the same applies to making eye contact with drivers to make sure that they see those walking. Traveling on foot while sober also helps people stay safe.
Both those behind the wheel and those on foot have to be aware of each other to reduce accidents and injury. Keeping the above safety tips in mind better ensures walkers reach their final destination unharmed.