Pedestrian Safety and Avoiding Bodily Injury
Pedestrians are more than people walking in a street; in fact, a pedestrian can be someone running, cycling, riding a skateboard, scooter or rollerblades, and even citizens operating motorized scooters. Chances are, every Pennsylvanian has been a pedestrian at one point, meaning each is at risk of experiencing an injury caused by the negligence of someone else.
NBC New York reported a story as recent as Jan. 16, 2017, about a pedestrian fatality. The man who was killed was the third pedestrian hit along a specific stretch of road in three months. Frequent drivers of Route 22 told reporters that many people are driving significantly over the posted 55 mph speed limit, especially if they have just exited an adjacent highway where the speed limit is 65 mph. Multiple businesses, gas stations, and restaurants line the thoroughfare, which contributes to the dangers for pedestrians on the road as drivers are constantly exiting, merging, and turning onto or off the three-lane highway.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration suggests some helpful tips for pedestrians to follow in their efforts to stay safe from injury and death. These include the following:
- Make eye contact with drivers to verify visibility.
- Notice cars exiting or entering a street, turning left or right, and backing away from parking spots or driveways.
- Do not use earphones or electronic devices while crossing roads.
- When available, stay on a sidewalk.
- Utilize crosswalks and signaling devices when present.
- Follow traffic laws, and cross the street during designated periods.
Pedestrians should always avoid drugs, alcohol or other substances that could impair judgment and limit their ability to react in emergency situations.