In 2017, 59% of traffic related deaths were pedestrians. While 2016 was the deadliest year for pedestrians since the early 2000’s, there were 70 collisions in November alone involving pedestrians and cyclists.
As these situations continue to occur, we hear stories about lives lost and collisions that could have been prevented. It is increasingly important that all road users take safety seriously. As a pedestrian, you are more physically vulnerable and at a high risk for serious injury involving a vehicle. Seniors are especially vulnerable in these situations, and are killed in pedestrian accidents at a staggeringly high rate.
Toronto is increasingly becoming more crowded and more challenging to navigate. When you are a pedestrian it is essential that you are actively aware of your surroundings and take as many safety measures as you can.
Mid-block crossings are especially dangerous areas for pedestrians. Out of the first five pedestrian deaths this year in Toronto, three of them occurred at mid-block crossings. Left turns by drivers at intersections are also particularly dangerous, even with increased driving laws. Recent changes prohibit drivers from moving through a cross walk while a pedestrian is crossing, however this law does not apply to cross walks at an intersection with traffic lights or a stop sign.
Whether you’re walking down the street to grab a coffee or walking to work, it’s important to remember certain precautions to help keep yourself safe.
Three pedestrian safety tips to remember:
- You’re invisible. Never assume a driver can see you. Remember to make eye contact with the driver before you cross - especially in low light or bad weather.
- Use the crosswalk. We know it’s tough in a large city like Toronto, but you should avoid jay walking in favour of cross walks. Just always remember to wait until the walking symbol lights up before crossing.
- Be alert. Keep aware of your surroundings, look where you’re going and always staying off your phone when crossing.
We hope these tips will help you keep safe as a pedestrian in your city. Want to join in on the conversation? Let us know your thoughts by tweeting us @OnliaCA #OnliaCA.