Motorists need to watch out for pedestrians and pedestrians need to watch out for motorists. Motorists have more responsibility under the law. PEDESTRIANS HAVE MORE AT STAKE.
- Drivers must yield the right of way to pedestrians crossing streets and need to be especially careful at intersections and when turning.
- Drivers should never drive distracted. Pay full attention to the driving task. Massachusetts has a texting while driving ban.
- Pedestrians should cross at marked crosswalks wherever possible and when the pedestrian walk sign is on. Always stop and look to see if it is safe before crossing and never jaywalk.
- Pedestrians should not walk while texting or otherwise distracted by cell phones or audio players. Wearing headphones can keep you from hearing vehicle horns.
- Make eye contact with the driver. This is vitally important. Sun glare can temporarily blind drivers. If you see a sun flare on the driver’s windshield, chances are they do not see you. Wait until the vehicle is fully stopped before crossing.
- Be seen. If walking after dark, carry a flashlight and wear reflective clothing.
- Watch for cars backing out of driveways.
For Parents and Caregivers:
From the National Center for Safe Routes to School, here are ways you can teach children in your care how to safely negotiate the roads. Download their PDF Helping Children learn Pedestrian Safety Skills
Let us all be mindful of other road users and share the road safely.
- According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2010, 4,280 pedestrians were killed and an estimated 70,000 were injured in traffic crashes in the United States. On average, a pedestrian was killed every two hours and injured every eight minutes in traffic crashes.
- Almost three quarters of all pedestrian fatalities nationwide occurred in urban, rather than rural settings.
- Almost 90 percent of pedestrian fatalities occurred during normal weather conditions, but 70 percent occurred at nighttime.
- In Massachusetts, according to NHTSA, 58 people died as a result of a pedestrian crash in 2010.