Pedestrian Accidents Disproportionately Affect Low-Income Areas
Several cities in Southern California are launching traffic safety campaigns to prevent auto, pedestrian and bicycle accidents, which seem to go hand in hand with Daylight Saving Time that begins this year on Nov. 6. The city of Glendale, for example, has launched its new Be Street Smart Glendale campaign asking community members to walk, drive and bike smart as the time change occurs this weekend.
In California and the rest of the nation, law enforcement officials have noted that car accidents, particularly pedestrian accidents increase, during this time of the year, between the hours of 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. Earlier sunsets and fewer daylight hours overall pose a challenge for drivers and pedestrians alike.
What Drivers Can Do
There are many steps drivers can take to help reduce the risk of accidents. Here are just a few tips:
- Make sure all of your vehicle lights are working properly including headlights, parking lights, turn signals, emergency flashes, brake and tail lights.
- Check your mirrors and make sure they are crack-free.
- Make sure your vehicle’s headlights are aimed properly. To do this, shine the headlights on a wall about 25 feet away.
- Drive cautiously. Be alert and watchful for bicyclists and pedestrians on the roadside as well as in crosswalks. They may not see you or hear you coming.
- Supervise young children as they enter and exit the vehicle, especially when parking on a street. To be safe, make them use a curbside door away from traffic.
- Remove sunglasses at dusk. Drivers often forget they are wearing them.
- Do not text or talk on the cell phone while driving.
- Be sure you are well rested before you get behind the wheel. Do not drive if you feel fatigued or drowsy.
- Be careful when you open the door on the side of traffic. Watch out especially for bicyclists.
- Always remember that you share the roadway with pedestrians and bicyclists.
- Although you get the street signals, make sure that you’re looking for pedestrians and bicyclists when making turns.
Tips for Pedestrians and Bicyclists
If you are walking or riding a bike, be sure to wear brightly-colored clothing or reflective gear that is easily illuminated by a vehicle’s headlights. Use crosswalks and sidewalks and do not jaywalk. Always look both ways before crossing the street, even when you have the “walk” signal. Make sure you are seen when you’re crossing the street. Make eye contact with the drivers around you so they know you are about to cross the street.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident, please contact an experienced California car accident lawyer who will remain on your side, fight for your rights and help you secure necessary compensation for your injuries, damages and losses.