See and be seen — it is the responsibility of both pedestrians and drivers to ensure each other’s safety.
In the fall and winter, as the weather changes and daylight hours decrease, pedestrians become more vulnerable as a result of low visibility and many other factors.
- Focus on the road and leave the phone alone.
- Always be ready to yield to pedestrians — especially when turning or near transit stops. Remember if a vehicle is stopped in front of you, they may be yielding to a pedestrian.
- Always attempt to make eye contact with pedestrians and signal that you see them crossing the street. Always assume a pedestrian may not see you.
- Watch for pedestrians after a bus has stopped to allow passengers to disembark.
- Be alert and slow down through school zones — keep in mind the maximum speed limit on campus roads is 30 km/h.
- Watch for drivers turning left or right through a crosswalk; drivers may be focused on oncoming traffic and not see you.
- Always make eye contact with drivers — in the winter when visibility is low, it may be hard for drivers to see you. Always assume a driver has not seen you unless they have signaled you can cross the street.
- Wear light-coloured clothing and consider wearing reflective gear to make it easier for drivers to see you — especially in wet weather, fog, at dusk and at night.
- Know your route — plan in advance, be familiar with the area and advise someone of your plans — using the Friend Walk function in the TRU SAFE app is a good way to have a virtual buddy.
- Try to travel in groups whenever possible.
- Avoid shortcuts that take you through dark, untraveled areas.
Distracted driving and walking
Mobile devices are everywhere but when used while driving or walking they are a distraction. If you are looking at your phone, you don’t see what is in front of or around you, which affects your situational awareness. Whether you are driving your vehicle, walking around campus, walking in a parking lot or around town, this can result in accident or injury to yourself and/or others.
Did you know that you are five times more likely to be in an accident if you’re on your phone? Distracted driving accounts for more deaths in BC than impaired driving.
Tips for safe cell use
- No call, text or email is so important it is worth risking your life or the lives of others. Let the call go to voicemail and ignore your text messages while driving.
- Put your phone away — completely out of reach so it isn’t a temptation.
- Assign a designated texter — ask you passenger to make or receive calls or texts for you.
- Pull over to make or receive a call when it is safe to do so. Many highway rest stops in BC provide free wi-fi.
- Use the ‘Do Not Disturb While Driving’ feature on your phone.