Spring is here and a lot of people now choose to walk or run around town instead of getting in their car on a nice day.  Recently, a young mother and child were struck by a car while crossing a busy Hoosick Street in Troy.  Over the past four years, there have been over 300 pedestrians injured crossing or walking on Central Avenue extending from Albany to Schenectady.

More often than not, these tragic accidents can be avoided by following the traffic signals and by taking proper precautions when crossing streets.  At LaMarche Safranko Law, we want you to be as safe as possible when walking/running on sidewalks and crossing streets.  Here are some tips from the Federal Highway Administration for being safe:

  • Always cross streets at intersections.  Not only is it much safer, it is also the law.  Depending on the town or city, jaywalking can actually be punishable by a fine or even time in jail!
  • Always use marked crosswalks.  Where available, marked crosswalks are far safer than unmarked intersections.  If an intersection doesn’t have a marked crosswalk,  try to find a nearby intersection that does.
  • Never cross in the middle of the street.  Drivers are never expecting pedestrians to cross in the middle of the street.  In addition, do not cross between two parked cars as it makes it difficult for you to see oncoming traffic, and even more difficult for drivers to see you.
  • Follow the signs.  Traffic lights and crosswalk signals are there to keep you safe.  Always pay attention to them and follow their instructions.
  • Pay attention to the weather.  In heavy rains or snow, it takes longer for cars to stop. Be mindful of this and wait additional time before crossing the street.
  • Be Seen.  Whether it is in the rain or at night, make sure drivers can see you.  Wear bright colors in bad weather, or reflective clothing at night.  Make eye contact with stopped cars at intersections so they know you are there.
  • Watch out for parking lots.  Sidewalks often border driveways, garages, and parking lot entrances.  If you approach an entrance, even on the sidewalk, look both ways before crossing.
  • Take your time.  Never ever run into the street if you are in a hurry.  If it will take a few extra minutes to wait for that illuminated crosswalk, wait!  Nothing is that important to risk putting yourself in danger.

No matter how safe and informed you are, accidents can still happen.  The vehicle and traffic laws are complex, and the facts are unique to every accident.  LaMarche Safranko Law is giving away reflective bracelets to help runners/joggers/walkers be seen.  Please provide us an e-mail and contact information at info@dani to receive a bracelet.  If you have not done so already, please like our LaMarche Safranko Law Facebook page.