Fall rush-hour traffic is the year’s most hazardous
The seasonal changes of autumn may be beautiful, but this time of year poses special risks to pedestrians, drivers and cyclists.
More accidents happen when the days are shorter and the sun is at eye level during rush hour. In fact, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University found pedestrians are three times more likely to be hit by a car during the weeks that follow the daylight savings time. Moreover, urban areas are where 75 per cent of road collisions occur.
For these reasons, everyone using the road needs to be extra vigilant when commuting to and from work or school. Being seen and acting with caution is the best way to stay safe while commuting on foot or on a bicycle. And seeing others who are less conspicuous is something we can all do.
“Be 100 per cent sure you can see the whites of the eyes of any driver who is approaching or stopping at any intersection before you dare to walk in front of their vehicle,” reminds Investigator-Preventionist Lyne Denis from the Security Department.
Most importantly, learn to avoid the constant bleeps and notifications coming from the device in your pocket. Whether on foot, a bicycle or driving a car, the distraction puts everyone at risk, and it's just not worth it.
A few key safety tips
- Obey all traffic signs and signals at intersections. Test your knowledge!
- Watch for drivers who make unexpected manoeuvres.
- Always cross the street at an intersection, not in the middle of a block. Jaywalking is illegal, and you can be fined $37.
- Always check that the intersection is clear and that drivers and cyclists see you before stepping onto the crosswalk or road.
- Make eye contact with other road users and wait for cars and cyclists to stop before crossing.
- Make yourself visible by wearing bright or reflective clothing. Consider carrying a flashlight or flashing red light at night.
- Know the rules of the road.
Pick up a Be Aware reflective decal at any Security service point on campus. They can be used on your bike, backpack or even on clothing.