Look to the Right

Winter typically doesn’t stop most of us from walking, running, cycling, or doing other similar activities outdoors. Some of us would rather be outdoors than at a gym year round, and a bit of cold isn’t going to hold us back. While the cold and ice is one thing, we also have to remember that since the days are shorter, we’re less visible and thus, more vulnerable.

Just last week I was heading out for a quick jog around my neighborhood, which is pretty quiet around 6:00 p.m. The sidewalks were covered, and as such, I was jogging along the left side of the road facing oncoming traffic (as required under Section 128 of the Highway Traffic Act). I came to a road on my left where there is a Stop sign for traffic entering the road I was on. A car approached the Stop sign with the intention of making a right hand turn. As we are all sometimes guilty of, the driver looked to his left, but not his right, so he did not see me. He sped out before he saw me stopped by the curb. The apologetic wave said it all.

Winter can be a fun season outdoors, but we have to take extra precautions. Some that I try to follow whether on my bike or jogging any time of year include:

  1. Assume you’re invisible. You know that bright neon green jacket that looks hideous in the store? It serves a purpose; people can spot you easier with it on after dark. Wear lights and lots of reflective clothing. Even with reflective clothing, don’t assume everyone sees you;
  2. Follow the rules of the road. When you’re riding your bike, you’re required to do so under the Highway Traffic Act. Be predictable, and drivers will not only be more comfortable around you, but also respect you and your fellow cyclists. Joggers, wait at the intersection until you can legally cross;
  3. Try to make eye contact with drivers so you’re sure they see you at intersections;
  4. A few friends together are easier to spot than a single person. There are plenty of groups to join with people who are looking for some outdoor exercise just like you. Visit your local running store or bicycle shop to learn more.

Unfortunately, even taking all the precautions you can, sometimes an unfortunate accident happens. If you’ve been injured while riding a bike, walking, or jogging, contact our offices. We’ve helped people like you before. We’ll make it our fight to get you the compensation you deserve and help you get back to doing the activities you enjoy.
I’ll see you out on the roads.