Pedestrian need to be more aware than ever these days. Distracted drivers are everywhere, leading to more and more car accidents and auto-pedestrian accidents. This is why walking defensively becomes even more important during the icy, snowy winter months. Here are some wintertime Pedestrian Safety tips:
Wear the Right Footwear
Your footwear makes a big difference in your ability to avoid a slip and fall. Wear boots with good rubber tread, manufactured specifically for winter walking. Carry your other shoes with you, even if you are just going to walk a few steps from the curb to your place of work. Those few steps can be a disaster if you have slippery, smooth footwear.
Watch for Vehicles
You may feel safe when walking on the sidewalk or waiting on a corner to cross a street, but during the winter months, this is not necessarily true. Vehicles can get out of control more easily on slick roads, sliding into intersections, across crosswalks, and onto sidewalks. Stay very aware of the movements of traffic, and when crossing the street, observe the traffic before you take the risk of stepping out. Don’t step out in front of oncoming cars, assuming they will stop.
Explore the Walking Surface Before You Go
If you are unsure if a specific area is icy, explore it with the toe of your boot before stepping onto it. Snow can cover icy patches and stepping onto that type of surface can mean an instant fall, with the danger of a serious injury, including head injuries, back injuries, broken bones and traumatic brain injuries.
Wear Gloves Rather Than Using Pockets
If your hands are in your pockets, you can lose your ability to break a fall with your arms, and increase the potential for a serious head or brain injury. Wear warm gloves and keep your hands free, and use any handrails or other supports when available.