Pedestrian Safety

Overview

At some point in the day, everyone is a pedestrian. Unfortunately, pedestrians were one of the few groups of road users to experience an increase in fatalities in the United States in 2016, totaling 5,987 deaths. NHTSA raises awareness of the dangers to pedestrians by providing safety tips, educational material and other resources. Find out how to protect yourself and your loved ones when walking, and learn how you can help us prevent pedestrian injuries and deaths.

The Topic

Pedestrians

Everyone Is a Pedestrian

1.5 On average, a pedestrian was killed every 1.5 hours in traffic crashes in 2016.

Everyone has different preferences when it comes to transportation, but at one time or another everyone is a pedestrian. Unfortunately, pedestrians were one of the few groups of road users in the United States to experience an increase in fatalities in 2016, totaling 5,987 deaths.

Traffic Safety Facts Pedestrians, March 2018 (PDF, 1.20 MB)

Whether you’re a concerned resident, a parent or a caregiver, you want to do everything you can to make sure you, your loved ones and your neighbors can enjoy walking safely in your community. The resources below will help you do just that. We offer pedestrians of all ages guidance on maintaining safety while enjoying the benefits of walking.

Walking Safely

Related Topic

Know the Basics—Pedestrian Safety

10 Walking Safety Tips

  1. Be predictable. Follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals.
  2. Walk on sidewalks whenever they are available.
  3. If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible.
  4. Keep alert at all times; don’t be distracted by electronic devices that take your eyes (and ears) off the road.
  5. Whenever possible, cross streets at crosswalks or intersections, where drivers expect pedestrians. Look for cars in all directions, including those turning left or right.
  6. If a crosswalk or intersection is not available, locate a well-lit area where you have the best view of traffic. Wait for a gap in traffic that allows enough time to cross safety; continue watching for traffic as you cross.
  7. Never assume a driver sees you. Make eye contact with drivers as they approach to make sure you are seen.
  8. Be visible at all times. Wear bright clothing during the day, and wear reflective materials or use a flashlight at night.
  9. Watch for cars entering or exiting driveways, or backing up in parking lots.
  10. Avoid alcohol and drugs when walking; they impair your abilities and your judgment.
    Driving Safely

    9 Driving Safety Tips

    1. Look out for pedestrians everywhere, at all times. Safety is a shared responsibility.
    2. Use extra caution when driving in hard-to-see conditions, such as nighttime or bad weather.
    3. Slow down and be prepared to stop when turning or otherwise entering a crosswalk.
    4. Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and stop well back from the cross-walk to give other vehicles an opportunity to see the crossing pedestrians so they can stop too.
    5. Never Pass vehicles stopped at a crosswalk. There may be people crossing that you can’t see.
    6. Never drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
    7. Follow the speed limit, especially around people on the street.
    8. Follower slower speed limits in school zones and in neighborhoods where children are present.
    9. Be extra cautious when backing up—pedestrians can move into your path.

    Finding and Creating Walkable Communities

    Keeping Your Kids Safe While They Walk

    Walking Safely and Staying Fit as You Age

    The Topic

    Safety Advocates

    If you're an advocate of pedestrian safety, or perhaps you work on a State or local pedestrian program, our curriculum and resources will equip you with the tools and information you need to effectively promote pedestrian safety.

    Visit FHWA's pedestrian Web pages for additional information.

    NHTSA In Action

    NHTSA is dedicated to promoting safe behaviors on our nation’s roads

    In 2016, there were 5,987 pedestrians killed in traffic crashes, up from 5,495 the year before. NHTSA’s pedestrian safety programs focus on the behaviors of pedestrians and motorists to reduce injuries and fatalities on our nation’s roadways. 

    NHTSA demonstrates its dedication to promoting safe pedestrian and motorist behavior through our educational material, leadership and expertise to communities across America. We also conduct public awareness campaigns, such as Everyone is a Pedestrian, raising awareness of the dangers to pedestrians.

    Please join us in reducing traffic safety risks to pedestrians and promoting programs and countermeasures to save the lives of all road users on our Nation's roadways. 

    Resources

    Resources

    Pedestrian Safety Officials

    Search for more resources

    69 Results
    Title Type Audience Date Language
     
    Right Of Way Worksheet-Students PDF, 858.18 KB
    Document Parents & Caregivers
    Right Of Way Worksheet-Teachers PDF, 864.56 KB
    Document Parents & Caregivers
    Safe Routes to School PDF, 3 MB
    Document Parents & Caregivers
    Safe Travel to School - Word Scramble PDF, 76.58 KB
    Document Pedestrians
    Safe Walking Tips for Youth PDF, 1.03 MB
    Document Pedestrians
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