This week, the 23-29 November, is Road Safety Week, and this year’s theme is “Drive less, live more.” Organisers of the event, Brake, chose the theme to encourage walking or cycling instead of driving, which could lead to safer roads while also reducing obesity and pollution.
However, we would like to remind everyone that although walking does have its benefits, you must take extra care in order to avoid injury when travelling on foot.
Distracted walking on the pavement is quite hazardous. Use of smartphones and headphones by pedestrians can be distracting, and drivers pay less attention to traffic when using car gadgets like GPS devices or when texting while driving.
Accidents caused by “failure to look”—by either pedestrians or drivers—have increased by 12% in ten years, according to the Department for Transport. Stay alert and don’t use noise-cancelling headphones while walking, and wear reflective clothing or lights in dark areas to be visible to drivers.
The upcoming Christmas holiday typically yields a high number of road accidents involving UK citizens on foot, because it is the peak period for drunk pedestrians. According to the Department for Transport, more than 6,000 intoxicated pedestrians have been injured in the last four years.
We commend all who drink responsibly and choose to walk or take public transportation, but please remember to take extra care while walking on roads. Walk home with a partner or in a group, stay on the pavement and in lit areas.
Shockingly, one survey suggested that one in eight drivers admitted to hitting a drunk pedestrian. The figure seems high, but is a timely reminder that if you are driving at night, take extra care during peak times of drunk foot traffic, going slower near pedestrians who might exhibit unpredictable behaviour after a night out. Alert the police if you see an overly intoxicated person on the road, to prevent an injury.
Accidents and personal injuries are all too common occurrences, and we hope this advice helps keep you safe while travelling. If you are injured, keep in mind that DMA Law specialises in representing clients with accident claims from road traffic accidents (RTA) – whether they are behind the wheel, or are a pedestrian who has been struck by a vehicle. Get in touch, we can help.