In my last blog, I wrote about a real car-on-pedestrian accident in Cicero, New York. That got me thinking about pedestrian safety. Car accident lawyers in New York, and everywhere, see a lot of cases involving cars striking pedestrians. It’s too common. And it’s not a fair match; the car always wins!
Automobile drivers are largely at fault when their vehicle strikes a pedestrian. Usually the driver fails to observe the pedestrian, drives too fast in an area of pedestrian traffic, or ignores pedestrian crosswalks..
Pedestrians, however, can take some simple steps (pun intended!) to protect themselves from inattentive, careless or speeding drivers. Here’s my list of top safety tips for pedestrians:
• Use sidewalks where available.
• If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic (you are legally required to do so)
• At night, wear light clothing, and better yet, reflective equipment.
• When crossing a road, or driveway, never assume drivers see you (especially at night).
• Try to make eye contact with a driver before you cross, so you know he sees you.
• When crossing, be aware that shrubbery, parked cars, or other objects may be blocking a driver’s view of you as you step out.
• Use crosswalks where available (you are legally required to do so).
• When in doubt, wait before crossing. Don’t assume a nearby driver sees you and is stopping for you.
• If you must walk along the side of the roadway or on the shoulder because there is no sidewalk, always stay as far to the side as you can.
You have surely heard the expression “drive defensively”. Same goes for walking. “Walk defensively”. Follow the rules outlined above. Be safe, not sorry.