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Pedestrian Accidents

We are particularly vulnerable to being hit by a car while walking in the city. People are often hit by inattentive drivers while crossing a street, even when they are in a crosswalk. It is therefore often difficult to avoid this type of accident, especially because cars are traveling so much faster than we are while walking, making it difficult for us to avoid contact and thus, injury. There are however, a few things we can do to avoid being hit by a car.

"Defensive Walking" and "Preventative Driving"

Defensive Walking:

Although it may sound silly, "defensive walking" can help reduce the likelihood of being hit by car while walking. Here are but a few suggestions:

  • Wear bright or reflective clothing, especially when you know you may be walking around dusk or at night.

  • Cross streets only within a crosswalk or at a marked intersection, whenever possible. Never attempt to cross a freeway or other other busy highway on which cars travel at high speed. It is often very difficult to judge how fast cars are traveling and one miscalculation can result in death or severe injury.

  • Use extra caution when walking near bars, cantinas, liquor stores or other locations where people may go to buy or consume alcohol (and may be drinking and driving), especially at night.

  • Even if a light is green or you a walk indicator is lit, look both ways before stepping from the curb. Anticipate that a driver may not be paying attention.

  • Never insist that you, a pedestrian, has the right of way--a car can kill you so if there is any chance a moving car might not yield, you should.

  • If a roadway has poor lighting and you are walking at night, try to cross the street where there is better lighting, or if your walk is a planned one, bring a small flashlight.

  • While some of these suggestions may make your walk less pleasant or take longer, they are also likely to help you live longer! Personal safety always should come first.

  • Preventative Driving:

  • Do not disregard cross walks.

    Cross walks can be present at intersections or at other points on the highway and it is very important that drivers take great care when passing these crosswalks. Pay attention and not disregarding cross walks can prevent a serious accident.

  • Pay attentions to traffic control devices. Some traffic devices are made for the control of pedestrian traffic, pay attention and do not disregard them.

  • Yield to pedestrians already crossing the street. If you see a pedestrian up ahead of your lane crossing the street even if the pedestrian is jaywalking; always, always, yield to the pedestrian. Failing to do so can cause serious injury to the pedestrian and can place the driver in serious legal trouble.

  • Do Not Drive While Intoxicated! You could be a serious danger to yourself, other drivers, and especially pedestrians. It is against the law to drive while intoxicated, just don't do it!

  • Be on high alert in school zones and residential areas. Make sure to follow the speed limit signs in these areas they are designed to protect you and the pedestrians. Be aware that children are present in these areas and they can easily dart out on to on coming traffic. Make sure to yield to school buses especially when children are crossing the street. If the rules are followed properly in these areas you will avoid a serious accident.

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