MNPD Urges Motorists & Pedestrians to Watch Out for Each Other
June 3, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
In an effort to raise awareness regarding pedestrian safety, the MNPD’s Traffic Section, which investigates fatal crashes, is urging motorists and pedestrians to watch out for each other.
In 2013, fifteen pedestrians died in fatal collisions. A contributing factor in six of those crashes was alcohol involvement on the part of the pedestrian. In nine deaths, a contributing factor was pedestrian in the roadway.
Safe pedestrian tips include:
- Be predictable. Follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals.
- Walk on sidewalks whenever they are available.
- If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible.
- Keep alert at all times-don’t be distracted by electronic devices.
- Cross at crosswalks or intersections whenever possible.
- Look for cars in all directions – including those turning left or right.
- If a crosswalk or intersection is not available, locate a well-lit area, wait for a gap in traffic that allows you enough time to cross safely, and continue to watch for traffic as you cross.
- Never assume a driver sees you. Make eye contact with drivers as they approach.
- Be visible at all times. Wear bright clothing during the day and reflective gear at night. Carry a flashlight.
- Watch for cars entering or exiting driveways, or backing up in parking lots.
- Avoid alcohol and drugs when walking; they impair your abilities and judgment.
Tips for motorists include:
- Look out for pedestrians everywhere, at all times. Safety is a shared responsibility.
- Use extra caution when driving in hard-to-see conditions.
- Slow down and be prepared to stop when entering a crosswalk.
- Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks.
- Stop a safe distance from the crosswalk to give other vehicles an opportunity to see the crossing pedestrians.
- Never pass vehicles stopped at a crosswalk. There may be people crossing that you can’t see.
- Never drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
- Follow the speed limit.
- Obey speed limits in school zones and wherever children are present.
- Be extra cautious when backing up – pedestrians can move into your path.
Motorists are also urged to exercise caution with school out for the summer and the increased number of children playing outside.