Pedestrian Safety

A pedestrian crossover sign with sky as backgroundAs we continue to enjoy the summer months, we believe it is appropriate to consider the importance of pedestrian safety. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, pedestrians are 1.5 times more likely to die than passenger vehicle occupants in a car crash. Below are a few simple tips and tricks to increase safety.

Keep Your Head Up!

“Distracted walking” is now an identified risk. Whether missing the curb, not noticing the fire hydrant, or failing to hear a passing car, distracted walking can lead to injury or death. Most distracted walking can be attributed to people looking at their phones.

Whether responding to a text message, playing a game, or searching for data, walking and cell phones are a dangerous, sometimes even deadly combination. Put the phone away while you are walking. If you need to use the phone, stop walking and step out of the path of traffic. Attend to your cell phone needs, then return to walking.

Be Visible

32 percent of all pedestrian fatalities occur between 8 pm and midnight. Many people give little thought to what they are wearing when they go for a walk. However, particularly at night or in low light conditions, such as dawn and dusk, light colored and reflective clothing can be a life saver. Additionally, consider carrying a flashlight. Even a small light makes pedestrians easier to see.

Stay in well lit areas. When selecting a walking route, particularly when crossing the street, consider brightly lit areas. Use the cross walks, rather than crossing in the middle of the block.

Make eye contact with the driver before stepping out into the street, even if you have the right of way. Never, ever presume a driver sees you.

Choose Your Walking Path with Care

Whenever possible, stay on the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk available, walk on the shoulder of the road, as close to the edge as possible. Walk against traffic, so that you can see what is coming. Particularly if you are not on a sidewalk, avoid wearing headphones, which block traffic noise.

A “walk” sign is not enough. Do not rely solely on a walk sign to step out into the intersection. With the number of distracted drivers on the roads these days, it makes sense to look left, right, and left again, even if you have the right of way.


Injured pedestrians have rights. At The O’Brien Firm, we are happy to talk with you about your pedestrian injuries. Our attorneys will meet with you at no cost. We meet with clients in our office, or another place convenient to them. During our consultations, we discuss our approach to your case, the possible damages you may be able to collect, and about how long your case may take. We answer any questions you or your loved ones may have.

If you choose to hire the firm, your attorney, and our support staff, keep you informed every step of the way. Contact us today at (716) 907-7777.