Especially in autumn and winter, when darkness falls quickly or visibility decreases due to bad weather conditions, pedestrians are at risk of being hit. Together with police officers, we suggest how to improve their visibility.
Thick fog, quickly falling darkness, rain and snow are difficult conditions that impair road safety. Then it is easy not to notice a pedestrian walking on the side of the road, but also a person who is on a pedestrian crossing. We tell you what pedestrians should do to make themselves more visible on the road.
Pedestrian on the road – driver, ensure good visibility
To improve safety in autumn and winter, drivers should take care of the lighting condition (cleanliness and headlight positioning), as well as visibility from inside the vehicle. It is unacceptable to drive a car with fogged or frozen windows, or faulty (worn) windshield wipers.
Pedestrians on the road – wear reflectors
Pedestrians should also take care of their own safety. The best way to improve their visibility is to use reflective elements. They should be worn not only by children but also by adults. The visibility of a pedestrian equipped with reflectors changes dramatically compared to the situation when we are dealing with a person not equipped with such elements.
Pedestrians on the road – let’s give drivers a chance
The braking distance of a vehicle traveling at a speed of 100 km/h on a slippery surface is from 60 to even 120 m, and a pedestrian, after dark or in conditions of limited visibility, who is not wearing reflective elements (armbands, vests or lights) is noticed only from a distance of approx. .30 meters. If a pedestrian is wearing reflective elements, the driver will notice him even 150-200 meters earlier. It then has time to react and maneuver to ensure the safety of vulnerable road users.
Pedestrian on the road – is there a penalty for not wearing reflectors?
Pursuant to Art. 11 of the Road Traffic Law, a pedestrian traveling on a road outside built-up areas after dusk is obliged to use reflective elements in a manner visible to other road users. Pedestrians riding bicycles, scooters, motorcycles or strollers on the roadside must also wear reflectors. Failure to comply with the obligation to use reflective elements in a manner visible to other road users by a pedestrian traveling on the road after dusk outside a built-up area, unless he or she is traveling on a road intended exclusively for pedestrians or on a sidewalk, is subject to a fine of PLN 100.
Pedestrian on the road – prevention is very important
On October 1, 2023, the Police once again launched the “Lead by Example” information and educational campaign. It will last until the end of the year. Its aim is to remind and make pedestrians, including seniors, aware of the need to use reflective elements and travel safely on the road. In addition to the nationwide educational campaign, officers from individual commands conduct individual campaigns. For example, police officers in Strzelce Krajeńskie, thanks to the financial support of the local District Office, purchased reflectors which they hand out during road checks. We, for our part, appeal to manufacturers of clothing and school bags to equip these items with reflective elements. We also ask parents to check whether their children are wearing reflective elements.