Pedestrian safety stressed to drivers and walkers prior to Halloween, Maryland State Police say

Posted at 2:53 PM, Oct 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-23 22:08:53-04

Prompted by several deadly pedestrian accidents generating headlines recently, the Maryland State Police are sharing safety reminders for motorists and pedestrians.

Between 2011 and 2017, about 111 pedestrians were killed and about 3,058 were injured on average each year, state police said. National statistics show pedestrian accidents trending upwards in recent years, as 4,779 pedestrian crashes were reported in 2013, state police said, with that number growing each year, reaching 5,987 in 2017. 

The education campaign is particularly pertinent as costume-clad trick-or-treaters take to Maryland streets for Halloween next Wednesday. State police emphasize using common sense, taking personal responsibility to ensure the safety of yourself and others. 

Drivers are encouraged to look out for pedestrians crossing roads, both at intersections as well as at other unauthorized points. Make sure to stop at crosswalks if pedestrians look like they are crossing, and be wary passing vehicles, particularly parked cars near intersections. Drivers should use extra caution at night, staying at or under the posted speed limit and yielding to pedestrians while turning.

Pedestrians are reminded to walk on sidewalks, and where one is not present, walk facing traffic (against it), not at your back (with it). Cross only at marked crosswalks and intersections and obey traffic signals. Make sure to look both ways while crossing the street, looking to the left, right, then left again, and if pedestrians are stepping out from behind parked cars, pause and check your crossing again as you may not be visible to oncoming traffic. If it is dark or the weather is bad, wear bright, reflective material to become more visible. Use caution and give the benefit of the doubt to any vehicle backing out of a parking spot or driveway. 

Pedestrian accidents have occurred in several Maryland counties in 2018, such as:

Anne Arundel County

Baltimore City 

Baltimore County 

Cecil County

Harford County 

Howard County 

Prince George’s County