End of Daylight Saving Time means caution needed on, around roads

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Transportation safety officials are reminding motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians that the end of Daylight Saving Time means more driving, biking and walking after dark.

That also means extra caution is needed to avoid a crash.

Daylight saving time ends October 29.

“It is getting dark an hour earlier in the evening so there will be more people, especially children, walking around and across streets when it is difficult for motorists to see them,” said ODOT Transportation Safety Coordinator Rosalee Senger. “It takes time for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists to adjust to more after-dark travel. You just cannot drive, ride or cross the street the same way after dark as you would during daylight because visibility is limited.”

There are a few easy steps that people can take to reduce the risk of being hit by a car or hitting someone with their car.

For drivers:

  • Expect the unexpected when it comes to pedestrians, especially children.
  • Stay focused on driving.
  • Slow down in areas where pedestrians may walk along or across the roadway.
  • Turn headlights on to make vehicle more visible.
  • Check windshield wipers and defroster before starting car.

For pedestrians/bicyclists:

  • Be alert. Do not assume a driver has seen you.
  • Do not assume a car will stop. Wait until it does.
  • Wear reflective, high visibility clothing and accessories.
  • Coats
  • Shoes
  • Reflective tags can be attached to zippers
  • Use bike lights, reflectors

“People tend to get stuck in a routine when it comes to traveling around town,” Senger said. “We want to remind them that their travel routine has to adjust when conditions change.”

« Back to the October 2006 edition