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MNPD Urges Motorists and Pedestrians/Bicyclists to Watch Out for Each Other



In a continuing effort to raise awareness regarding pedestrian and bicycle safety, the MNPD’s Traffic Section, which investigates fatal crashes, is urging Nashvillians to watch out for each other on our roadways, especially with the warmer weather and the increase in people, including children, out walking and biking.

In 2019, 32 pedestrians died in fatal collisions. A contributing factor in 55% of those crashes was impairment on the part of the pedestrian. More than a quarter of Nashville’s fatal crashes last year involved a pedestrian in the roadway, outside of a crosswalk, or otherwise improperly in the roadway.

Safety Tips for Motorists

  • Never drive under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol;
  • Avoid distracted driving;
  • Reduce speed in school zones and in neighborhoods where children are present.
  • Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalks, stopping a safe distance away so that pedestrians can be clearly seen by other motorists;
  • Allow at least three feet when passing bicycle riders;
  • Bicyclists have the same right to the road as drivers;
  • Yield to bicyclists just as you would for a motorist;
  • In order to avoid collisions, do not underestimate the speed of a bicyclist especially as you turn at intersections and into driveways.

Safety Tips for Pedestrians

  • Be predictable. Follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals;
  • Stay on sidewalks whenever they are available. If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible;
  • Be alert! Do not be distracted by electronic devices;
  • Use crosswalks;
  • Look for vehicles in all directions;
  • Never assume a driver can see you;
  • Be visible. Wear bright clothing during the day and reflective material at night;
  • Never walk along or try to cross the interstate or other controlled-access roadways.

Safety Tips for Bicyclists

  • Bicycle riders must follow the same laws as drivers and have the same rights and responsibilities;
  • Make your intentions clear. Ride in a straight line, use hand signals, and ride predictably. Go with the traffic flow and ride on the right side in the same direction as cars;
  • Ride where road users can see you, wear bright clothing, and use lights.
  • Be alert! Watch out for road hazards;
  • Don’t wear earphones while riding so you can hear traffic;
  • Always wear your helmet, properly adjusted and buckled.