Even if you typically think of yourself as a driver, there are also times when you are a pedestrian. Whether you are walking or driving, you bear some responsibility for preventing accidents involving pedestrians and motor vehicles.

While your responsibility does not change based on what role you play, the safety rules you should follow sometimes do. AAA describes both the responsibilities of drivers and pedestrians and safety guidelines for each role.

Drivers

As a driver, you should always pay close attention to crosswalks. When you see one, reduce your speed and prepare to stop even if you do not see anyone waiting to cross. Avoid passing other vehicles that have stopped at crosswalks. There may be pedestrians present that you cannot see. Always be alert for pedestrians, especially when pulling into or out of a driveway or under conditions of reduced visibility. Avoid distractions and impairment with drugs or alcohol and obey traffic rules at all times.

Pedestrians

Some of the safety tips for drivers also apply when you are a pedestrian, especially as it relates to avoiding intoxication and distraction. As a pedestrian, you should stay alert to what drivers around you are doing. Even if the law gives you the right of way, do not assume that drivers will honor it. Before entering the roadway, try to make eye contact with the drivers of any approaching vehicles. This helps to ensure that they see you. You can also make yourself more visible by wearing reflective clothing or at least bright colors.

Crosswalks and sidewalks are safe areas provided specifically for pedestrian use. You should walk in these areas whenever they are available. When there are no crosswalks, you should only cross at the corner and travel perpendicularly, never diagonally. Walk on the side of the road that has you facing approaching traffic when there are no sidewalks.