In 2017, Vancouver was voted the most ‘walkable’ city in Canada. Although this means Vancouver is considered safe for those travelling on foot, accidents involving pedestrians still occur. Because pedestrians do not normally wear protective gear, there is no protection if they are struck by a moving vehicle. That is why these accidents can result in serious injury and death, even when collisions happen at low speeds. Therefore, every effort must be made to reduce the number of pedestrian accidents in Vancouver.
What drivers can do to ensure pedestrian safety
Here are some tips for drivers:
• Obey traffic signals
• Always expect the unexpected
• Drive with added caution near schools, playgrounds, residential areas and other places where children might be as they may dash across the road.
• When a bus stops it might be letting passengers off. So, look out for people who might walk out into the road.
• When pedestrians are crossing, wait until they get the other side of the road before proceeding.
• Be patient when the elderly cross the street as they tend to take longer.
While it is important for drivers to look out for those who are walking, the brunt of the responsibility lies on the shoulders of pedestrians. After all, they are the ones more at risk for injury or death in case of an accident.
How pedestrians can ensure their own safety
Here are some things pedestrians should do:
If you are listening to music while you walk, you are not fully aware of your surroundings. You might not be able to hear approaching vehicles or warning sounds if something goes wrong.
Obey pedestrian signals
If the pedestrian signal says stop, do not try to beat oncoming traffic by running across the road. You can’t always judge the speed at which vehicles are coming and sadly drivers are not always as attentive as they should be. For those reasons, wait until the pedestrian signal says it is safe to go before attempting to cross the road.
Look up and down
Look both ways before crossing the street. Always do this regardless of what traffic signals say. Lots of times drivers go when they are not supposed to. Check before you move from the sidewalks.
Ensure you can be seen
As much as possible, stay out of drivers’ blind spots. Blind spots are those areas that cannot be when a driver is looking ahead or through his or her side or rear-view mirrors. Also, do not make it a habit of crossing behind vehicles as a driver could put his or her vehicle in reverse without noticing you. If you are trying to cross while a car is waiting to turn, make eye contact with the driver before doing so. If not, assume the driver has not seen you, and wait.
You do not necessarily have to wear reflective jackets, but it might be a good idea to opt for bright colour overs dark ones when walking at night. This will help drivers to see you more easily as you use crosswalks.
Do you need a pedestrian accident lawyer?
If you are a pedestrian who was injured in an accident caused by the negligence of a driver, you should be compensated for your injuries. Nirwan Law Corporation will work with you to file an ICBC claim. Our pedestrian accident lawyer will make all efforts to maximize your settlement amount and ensure you receive all the benefits you’re entitled to under the law.
We offer a free, no-obligation pedestrian accident case evaluation and if you don’t win, you don’t pay. Furthermore, if you can’t come in to see us because of your injuries, we’ll come to you. So, why not give us a call today?