Staying Safe on the Road: Tips Every Driver and Pedestrian Should Know

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When driving, you must consider the safety of passengers, pedestrians, and your safety. If you are a pedestrian, you need to take care of your safety. Whether you are a driver or pedestrian, staying guarded during your travels is vital. Also, remember to be responsible for all your actions on the road since they affect other road users.

Safety Tips for Drivers

Avoid Distractions

One of the main reasons you get distracted while driving is that you use your phone. You could be calling, texting, finding directions, checking the latest updates on social media, taking selfies, and so much more. Learn to set boundaries. Simple things like putting your phone in silent mode during the journey will help you stay focused on the road.

Other reasons you get distracted are emotional turmoils, uncatered for needs like hunger, and non-visual distractions such as listening to loud music. To overcome any distraction, you need to stay mindful and engaged. If you think you are too distracted and need some time to refocus, drive to the edge of the road or parking lot and meditate or take a rest.

Stay Sober

Do not take any alcoholic drinks eight hours before or during your ride. Alcohol consumption hinders your ability to stay focused, discern, make quick reactions, and stay coordinated. When you drink and drive, you risk your safety and that of others. Furthermore, driving with a BAC of 0.05 to 0.08 (depending on the state) is considered a criminal offence.

Drive the Speed Limit

The speed limit allowed is not always the same in all areas. The recommended speed is 25mph and below for parking lots and residential areas. Other than that, you need to familiarise yourself with speed management, as it lowers the severity of accidents and injuries. Remember to stay vigilant on slower roads as distractions can easily set in.

Safety Tips for Pedestrians

Follow Traffic Signs and Cross the Road at Intersections

Pay attention to road signs and traffic lights to avoid unnecessary violations. Walk on the footpath. If there is none, walk facing traffic but keep a safe distance from the traffic. When crossing the road, use crosswalks since drivers expect to see pedestrians there. Additionally, do not cross the road until all the cars have stopped moving.

Do not assume that a Driver Sees You.

When crossing the road, make eye contact with the driver to ensure that they see you. In case of an accident, a Hit-and-run driver flees easily if they notice you did not see them, among other reasons. Further, it would help if you made yourself visible. For instance, if you are walking at night, use a flashlight or wear reflective clothing.

It would be best if you avoided crossing between parked vehicles and too close to the front or back of a vehicle. If high objects or walls obstruct your view, the driver on the other side cannot see you, so you need to find a better crossing position.

Watch out for Situations That Require Extra Care

Check out and prioritise emergency vehicles, tramways, road repairs, and railway crossings. For example, if an ambulance, police car, or fire engine approaches using sirens and lights, keep off the road. 

If a repair is being done and a section if the road has been temporarily closed, do not use it. Not all accidents involve motorists; some can occur from machinery used in construction or repair. 

Be Mindful of The Vulnerable

Help children, the elderly and the physically impaired to cross the road. More often, unaccompanied children either get distracted or do not know how to cross busy roads. Holding their hand while they cross the road can go a long way in saving them from being hit. Even if you are not related to them, do not let any child cross the road without help.

The elderly may be unable to cross the road in time. Some may need help maintaining mobility to keep safe on the streets. Further, peripheral vision slumps as one gets older, and one may not have a clear view of the traffic.

One may not cross the road without help, depending on the physical impairment. A blind person, for instance, cannot read the signs or check the road for vehicles. So please be kind enough to help a person living with a disability be safe.

You can avoid many crashes and road hazards if you choose to be a responsible driver or pedestrian. If you notice unsafe actions on the road, note down important details such as the plate number of the vehicles involved and make a report to the police. Roads are shared facilities, and you need to consider all road users.

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