(Photo by Artem Saranin from Pexels)
It is an unfortunate happenstance, but an occurrence worldwide. There have been numerous incidents around the globe revolving around vehicle crashing into pedestrians. For instance, on April 23, 2018, a van in Toronto, Canada struck pedestrians, injuring 16 and killing 9. On April 7, 2018, a van in Muenster, Germany, crashed into people who were drinking outside of a bar, killing two people and injuring 20 others. On April 13, 2018, a Mercedes plowed into two other vehicles as well as four pedestrians on a nearby sidewalk.
Point being is that you should strive to avoid being run over by a car.
Fortunately, we have some tips on how to avoid becoming an accident victim. Read on to find out:
1. Do not distract yourself when walking.
Distractions surround us, thanks to the smartphone and headphones. Lots of us – myself included – are absorbed in their phones, browsing through whatever social media we have or listening to some beats on Spotify or Apple Music.
Well, to be frank, you need to pocket the phone, or whatever distracting device you have, and look up when you’re walking near heavy traffic. With your sense of awareness clouded by devices, you’ll be unable to defend yourself properly.
2. Use the crosswalks!
Seriously, jaywalking is, strictly speaking, dangerous.
Crosswalks are there for a reason, and crossing somewhere other than the crosswalk will increase your risk of injury or death. In fact, according to Safe Kids, “Crossing someplace other than an intersection accounts for more than 70 percent of pedestrian deaths.”
So take the time to cross at the corner rather than cross mid-block.
3. Do not let your impatience get the better of you.
Similar to the previous section, letting your impatience get the better of you is perilous. On my commute to work, I see lots of people cross without waiting for the crosswalk signals, and mentally I cringe and worry about them.
Wait for the crosswalk signal. End of story.
4. Protect yourself from careless drivers.
Not only do you need to be aware of your surroundings, but you’ll need to protect yourself from careless drivers – unfortunately, there are plenty of careless drivers on the road. What you need to do is remain diligent: look left, right, and left before crossing the street, but do not stop there. Make sure to continue looking in all directions while crossing.
Diligence is key.
5. Wear bright clothing at night.
You know how bikers are often told about wearing reflective gear, especially at night?
The same rules apply to pedestrians. At night, do not wear dark clothes. You’ll be less likely seen by drivers. Be super alert and ensure that drivers can see you. Wear reflective gear, if you have to.
6. Watch for cars that back up.
While backup cameras are mandatory in new cars (as of May 2018), there are plenty of “older” cars that do not have backup cameras, which means you are at an increased risk of being hit by a car that’s backing up.
Whether or not a car has a backup camera shouldn’t matter. You should be alert at all times and make sure that you are out of the way when a car is backing up.
Sometimes, you may find yourself in an unavoidable situation, but that’s enough material for another article.