Pedestrian Safety Tips

• Cross streets at a corner, using traffic signals where available and crosswalks.

• Always look left, right, and left again before crossing a street, and keep watching as you cross. Be aware that drivers have differing levels of eyesight and skill in operating
motor vehicles.

• Pedestrians should be especially careful at intersections, where drivers may fail to yield
the right-of-way to pedestrians while turning onto another street.

  • Make sure you are seen:

a)   Make eye contact with drivers when crossing busy streets.

b)   Wear bright colors or reflective clothing if you are walking near traffic at night.

c)   Carry a flashlight when walking in the dark.

• Walk on the sidewalk whenever possible. If sidewalks are not available, walk facing traffic on the edge of the road, as far from the travel lane as possible.

  • Walk defensively and be ready for unexpected events. Know what’s going on around you and don’t allow your vision to be blocked by clothing, hats, or items that you are carrying.
  •  Watch the pedestrian signals, not the traffic signal, and follow the “WALK/DON’T WALK” lights (they’re set up to help you cross safely). Look for pedestrian push buttons for crossing protection at signalized intersections.
  •  Watch out for parked vehicles. Parking lots can be as dangerous as streets.

• Avoid alcohol and drugs as they can impair your ability to walk safely.

• When crossing, use all of your senses and don’t use your cell phone for calls and texting.

• Use particular caution when crossing driveways and alley entrances. Drivers may not expect you to be there or see you.

• Adults should supervise children when crossing streets. Smaller children may be difficult for drivers to see and young children may not be able to judge whether it is safe to cross a street.

Motorists need to be vigilant of pedestrians and pedestrians need to be vigilant of motorists. Although motorists have more responsibility under the law when operating a motor vehicle on city streets, pedestrians have more at stake.

The Department of Public and Environmental Safety is working with university officials and our partners in the cities of Somerville and Medford to improve pedestrian safety on and around campus.

Please use this information and these safety tips to travel in and around campus safely.

Tufts Department of Public and Environmental Safety