When you leave your home and venture out to run errands or go to work, chances are you will be a pedestrian at some point during the day. Pedestrians are literally everywhere in major Colorado cities like Denver. If you have visited or lived in Denver, you are likely aware that walking is not only a preferred form of transportation here, but it can be an invigorating way to take in the natural beauty of this city.
Amidst all the hustle, bustle and excitement, it is important to acknowledge the potential dangers that are often present around city streets. In recent years, officials and law enforcement agencies throughout Colorado have made tremendous progress for pedestrian safety. However, sharing the road safely is the responsibility of both drivers and pedestrians. Whether you are driving, walking or biking, what follows may help you protect yourself and others the next time you are out on the road.
When you are a pedestrian, it is critically important to do all that you can to be visible to drivers. Drivers must see you to avoid hitting you. When you are crossing the street, make eye contact with drivers around you and stay out of their blind spots. When walking at night near traffic, wear bright or reflective clothing or carry a flashlight.
Crossing or walking near busy streets
When walking alongside busy streets, make sure to always stay on the sidewalk. If you absolutely must walk where there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic so you can better spot potential threats. Also, if you need to cross the street, only do so at crosswalks. Most pedestrian accidents happen when pedestrians attempt to cross the road where there are no crosswalks.
Be mindful of children
If you’re a parent, you know how unpredictable small children can be. Small children should never walk or play near traffic, and they should never cross the street unattended. As your children get older, teach them pedestrian safety habits like crossing only at intersections with crosswalks and looking left, right, then left again before crossing.
When you are driving through an area with pedestrians, the most important thing to remember is to slow down. Drive defensively and continually scan the area around you. Watch for sudden, unexpected movements by pedestrians. Avoid using your phone or other distractions when driving, and never get behind the wheel while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
What to do after an accident
Unfortunately, no matter how careful you are when you are walking or driving, accidents can happen completely without warning in the blink of an eye. Life can change permanently if you or one of your loved ones are involved in a serious accident. Luckily, those who have suffered injuries or loss in motor vehicle accidents caused by negligence have options available that could help them get through this troubling experience.