New York is not very motor vehicle-friendly. As such, many people choose to walk to get from point A to point B. While walking is a great form of exercise, pedestrians face dangers every time they venture out onto New York’s busy streets.
Many motorists do not watch for pedestrians while driving. Distractions and general hurriedness cause drivers to focus on where they are going and not who is in front of them. As a result, pedestrian accidents are quite common. In 2017, 5,977 people were killed in pedestrian crashes in the United States.
Everyone is a pedestrian at some time in their lives, so it is important for everyone who uses the roadways to understand how to keep themselves and others safe. Here are some tips for pedestrians and motorists alike.
Safety Tips for Pedestrians
- Walk on sidewalks. Stay out of the road as much as possible so you don’t get hit by a car.
- Cross at crosswalks. Drivers are expecting pedestrians at crosswalks and are more likely to stop, so try to cross at one if possible.
- Be visible. Wear reflective clothing so you can be easily seen at night.
- Stay alert. Don’t listen to music or talk on your phone while crossing streets. Use your senses to stay alert and avoid crashes.
- Follow the law. Obey stoplights and signals. Don’t cross the street until it is safe to do so.
- Make eye contact. Never assume a driver sees you. Make eye contact with them before crossing to ensure safety.
- Don’t walk while intoxicated. While drinking and driving is dangerous, so is drinking and walking. Intoxication is one of the biggest factors in pedestrian crashes, and more often than not, the pedestrian is the one who is under the influence.
Safety Tips for Motorists
- Be alert. Be on the lookout for pedestrians at all times.
- Never drive while intoxicated. Alcohol distorts your judgment and slows down your reactions. Avoid driving if you have been drinking.
- Drive according to road conditions. Be extra careful when driving in rain, snow, and at night when visibility is at its worst.
- Stop at red lights. Make sure to stop before turning at red lights at intersections. Pedestrians may be crossing the street, so be cautious and look both ways before making a turn.
- Follow the speed limit. Take it slow, especially when around intersections and other areas where children and other pedestrians may be present.
- Back up carefully. It is harder to see pedestrians when you are in reverse. Use extra caution, especially around children.
Get Hurt? Get Gary!
Pedestrians have very little protection in the event of an accident. As such, they are prone to serious injuries and even death.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident in New York, act quickly to protect your legal rights. The Falkowitz Law Firm can start building your case so you can get the compensation you need to pay for medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. Call 844-GET-GARY to schedule a consultation today.
Gary P. Falkowitz is the Managing Partner and Founding Attorney of the Falkowitz Law Firm PLLC‚ one of the premiere personal injury law firms in New York. Gary received his J.D., in 2005 from St. John’s University School of Law and served as an Assistant District Attorney with the Kings County District Attorney’s Office.