Friday, November 20, 2020

PSA: Please Look Both Ways

If you've been around my corner of the InterWebs for a while (by the way - THANKS!), you probably know a large chunk of my posts are intended for runners. Well, that's not 100% the case with this one... It's aimed at drivers (but, let's be real, I'd say most runners also have a driver's license and operate a vehicle of some sort, so I guess it's for us too!). Even still, November is Running Safety Month, so I thought it was perfect timing for this PSA (especially with fewer sunshine hours).

I do my darnedest to be a safe runner. I wear bright colors, I throw on a ton of lights and reflective gear if I am running in the dark, I don't listen to music so I can hear my surroundings, I tell others where I will be running and when they should expect me to return, I run in highly trafficked areas, I stop at intersections and make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of vehicles, etc. Even still, I can't tell you the number of times I have almost been hit by an automobile.

In fact, I was hit by a car when I was on my bike a few years back... Thankfully I wasn't injured, but that experience, along with numerous recent close calls has me wanting to stress the importance of today's "public service announcement".

As children, we are taught to look both ways when we cross the street... but what about drivers?! I mean, I'd assume they teach you that in driver's ed, right?! {Confession: I never took driver's ed... I waited till I was 18 and went to the Secretary of State to get my license... but I'm assuming this is something they stress to anyone who may get behind the wheel.}

Runners are told they should run against traffic - that way you can see oncoming vehicles (and can jump out of the way if a crazed driver is heading in your direction). For the most part I follow this guideline, but, let me tell you, I think this is where I run into the most close calls. More often than not, when I come to an intersection or cross a driveway and a vehicle is turning right (meaning they will be heading in the direction I just came from), they look to the left to make sure there is no oncoming traffic AND THEN GO... This can be disastrous for pedestrians who are coming from their right!

I would like to URGE all drivers to look BOTH WAYS before taking their foot off the brake and pressing the gas pedal! I'd even recommend drivers stop a few feet short of a crosswalk/ sidewalk and double check to make sure there are no runners/ walkers/ bikers/ etc making their way to the intersection before looking both ways to ensure traffic is clear.

This is a step that takes an extra second or two, but can literally save a life. I realize sometimes we're in a hurry or we get into a routine and rush through an intersection without paying proper attention, but this is something we MUST prioritize.

PS While we're at it, I wanted to mention grabbing yourself a ROAD iD if you don't have one already. This snazzy (and cute) Medical ID can talk for you if you are ever unable to talk for yourself. You can put all of your pertinent information on it (name, phone number, emergency contact, medical information, etc) just in case an accident does occur. I have multiple (depending on the color of my outfit, duh!) and honestly never leave home without it on my wrist. If you don't have one and want to place an order, use code CARLEE_2020 to save 20%! [FYI: I do not make anything from recommending this to you nor am I notified if you use the link. I am an ambassador for ROAD iD, but had been using their products for YEARS prior to them asking me to be a part of the team. I'm simply passing along one of my fave pieces of safety gear to you.]

Even Walt the Wiener Dog has a ROAD iD on his harness! I also got some for my parents to wear when they're on their bikes, kayaks, etc! 

What is one PSA that you believe everyone needs to hear?

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