Going for a run can put you at significant risk of being injured by a vehicle. If you’re running on the sidewalk or the shoulder of the road, you have to share that space with drivers who may make mistakes. If you run in urban areas, you also have to cross roads and driveways, which can be dangerous every single time you make such a move.
Fortunately, there are some relatively easy steps you can take to facilitate your safety as a runner. A few examples are explored below.
Ditch the distractions
Don’t let yourself become distracted trying to use your phone. Even if you use it to track your distance, keep it in your pocket while you run. You’re also safest if you don’t even listen to music. The sound itself can be distracting and insulates you from the world around you.
Become more visible
It’s also important to note that many drivers strike pedestrians simply because they don’t see them. The best thing you can do to make yourself safe is to become more visible to the drivers around you. Consider wearing LED lights or headlamps, especially if you run at dawn, dusk or at night. Even when you’re running during the day, consider resources like high-visibility clothing or reflective tape.
Obey all traffic signals
You may have to break your stride in order to wait at a crosswalk. But that’s always better than jaywalking. Drivers expect you to be in certain places and obeying traffic signals helps you adhere to those expectations. This also helps to ensure that the other party can be held responsible if you are injured in a car accident.
Finally, you’ll want to assume that drivers are going to make mistakes. Assume that the driver waiting at the stop sign doesn’t see you or that the driver coming up to the light too quickly isn’t going to stop in time. It may even help to pretend you’re invisible. Never count on anyone else when it comes to your safety.
These tips can certainly help, but drivers are still going to make mistakes and injure pedestrians every day. Those who have been hurt can benefit from knowing how to seek compensation for medical bills, lost wages and much more.