As reported by the Miami Herald, Florida is the most dangerous state for pedestrians in the nation, with pedestrian fatalities throughout Florida hitting a 10-year high. The Miami-Fort-Lauderdale-West Palm Beach area has been named as the 11th most dangerous metropolitan area in the entire country.
This doesn’t mean that you should give up on walking if you live in Miami, but it does mean that you should exercise caution when you’re walking anywhere cars might be. Here are some pedestrian safety tips to help keep you safe:
One thing that has contributed to pedestrian deaths in recent years is not just the number of distracted drivers, but the number of distracted walkers. To be sure, the National Safety Council reports that over a 12 year period, distracted walking accidents involving cellphones accounted for more than 11,100 injuries.
If you plan to go for a walk, make sure your phone is out of sight and out of mind. Looking down at it increases the risk of a slip and fall accident, as well as the chances that you won’t be able to see oncoming traffic. You should also not walk with headphones in, as this impairs your ability to hear oncoming vehicles.
Walk in Safe Places
When you go for a walk, one of the safest things that you can do is to walk in safe places, which means always sticking to a sidewalk, and preferably walking in pedestrian-only zones. If a road doesn’t have a sidewalk, try to avoid walking there if it is heavily trafficked. Remember that when you are crossing roads, you should always do so using crosswalks, which are intended to help keep pedestrians safe. If pedestrian bridges are available, use these in place of crosswalks.
Don’t Assume a Vehicle Will Yield the Right-of-Way
If you are going for a walk, there will come a point where you have to cross the road. When you do so, you should always make sure that you have the legal right-of-way, which you likely do if you are in a marked crosswalk or/and the crossing signal indicates that you may proceed. However, just because you have the legal right of way does not mean that a vehicle will stop. Before you cross, make eye contact with the driver of the vehicle, and ensure that they are coming to a full stop.
Wear Bright Clothing, and Use Lights at Night
If you are someone who likes to walk or jog when lighting is poor, make sure you protect yourself by wearing bright clothing and using lights at night. It is also a smart idea to wear clothing that has some reflective tape on it to help drivers be able to see you.
What to Do Following a Pedestrian Crash
When a pedestrian accident occurs, the damages can be significant. At the law offices of Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum LLP, we can help you to fight for your right to a settlement that compensates you for the full extent of your losses if you are involved in a pedestrian crash in Miami. To learn more about our legal services and how our Miami pedestrian accident attorneys can help you, please contact our law offices today online for your free consultation.