As the weather continues to improve here in Ohio, more people may take the time to get out and walk. With more people on foot, the possibility of auto-pedestrian accidents increases. While drivers need to pay attention and look out for them, pedestrians can take some steps to try to improve their chances of avoiding injury.

Without the safety of being inside a passenger vehicle with all of its safety features, such as seat belts and airbags, pedestrians face serious or deadly injuries if struck by a vehicle. Remaining alert and attentive to their surroundings is vital to getting to their destinations safely. First, this means putting away any electronics, which provide an ever-growing distraction to drivers and walkers alike.

Using earphones to listen to music, podcasts or other entertainment may seem like a good idea, since it does not take a person’s eyes off his or her surroundings, but it dulls the ability to hear. This could keep someone from hearing an approaching vehicle. Intersections are obviously one of the most dangerous parts of any walk, but even sidewalks are not always safe. Drivers make mistakes, and many drive onto sidewalks.

Walking in areas without sidewalks poses an additional danger, and people need to remain extra cautious. Walking at night can be particularly dangerous, especially in areas where the lighting is not good. Wearing clothing visible to vehicles could help offset this danger. Making eye contact with drivers at intersections lets a pedestrian know that he or she is seen.

Even when a pedestrian takes as many precautions as possible and does everything right, accidents still happen. Each year, auto-pedestrian accidents take the lives of innocent people and cause serious injuries from which a victim may not fully recover. When this happens, it may be possible to pursue restitution for the accompanying financial losses through the filing of a claim in an Ohio civil court.