January 25, 2010
Seatbelt Use and Pedestrian Safety
The focus for this month is to ask all occupants of vehicles to please wear seatbelts and to remind pedestrians to walk facing traffic for maximum safety.
During the month of January, we have seen an increase in motor vehicle fatalities throughout the state. Many of these accidents had a driver or passenger who was not belted and was ejected from the vehicle. Your odds of surviving a rollover accident increase significantly if you are belted and remain in the vehicle.
There was also an increase in pedestrians being fatally injured. Although drivers have the ultimate responsibility for their vehicles, pedestrians should always be watching for distracted drivers. Pedestrians are reminded to always walk facing traffic when there is two-way traffic and, if there is no sidewalk available, to continuously monitor the traffic behind them.
For safety purposes, it is always safer to walk facing traffic when possible. It is always safer to see what drivers are doing as they approach you.
265:39 Pedestrians on Roadway.
I. Where sidewalks are provided it shall be unlawful for any pedestrian to walk along and upon an adjacent roadway.
II. Where a sidewalk is not available, any pedestrian walking along and upon a way shall walk only on a shoulder, as far as practicable from the edge of the roadway. Where neither a sidewalk nor a shoulder is available, any pedestrian walking along and upon a way shall walk as near as practicable to an outside edge of the roadway, and if on a two-way roadway, shall walk only on the left side of the roadway.
III. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, any pedestrian upon a roadway shall yield the right of way to all vehicles upon the roadway.