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PD Officers' Tips To Keep Walkers, Cyclists Safe

April 13, 2014 by Special To The ...

Whether you walk for the health benefits, mobility without a motor vehicle or to enjoy the great outdoors, the Cheshire Police Department would like to help make sure you are safe while doing so. Crossing streets can be dangerous and we would like to offer some tips to help you get where you are going:

*Cyclists should understand that when riding in the street they are recognized as a motor vehicle and must follow laws. When riding on a sidewalk they are recognized as a pedestrian and must abide by pedestrian laws.
*Stop at the curb and look left, right, and left again for traffic.
*When you are stopped at the curb, drivers will recognize you intend to cross and will slow down or may even stop.
*Cross within the marked crossing area.
*If crossing outside the marked area, recognize that drivers do not expect to see you there.
*Wait for natural, safe gaps in traffic to cross.
*Pedestrians shouldn't assume the driver sees them, even if they see the driver.
*Look before walking past stopped vehicles.
*Do not cross just because a driver waves you on. Be sure all lanes are clear first.
*Use extra caution when crossing at night. A pedestrian will see a vehicle approaching sooner than the driver will see the pedestrian.

It is important to recognize that pedestrians do have the right of way once inside an established crosswalk. Pedestrians also have an obligation to their own safety and that of the motoring public.
Connecticut General Statutes provide that the right of way is established provided that “the pedestrian steps to the curb at the entrance to a crosswalk” thus giving the motorists an opportunity to recognize and react to the presence of a pedestrian.
Additionally, “no pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb, sidewalk, and crosswalk … into the path of a vehicle so as to constitute an immediate hazard.”
Finally, the Cheshire PD would like to remind local walkers and cyclists that should they have to travel within the paved portions of a public road, walkers should walk against the traffic and cyclists should ride with the flow of traffic.
Should you have any concerns or questions regarding pedestrian crossings and other safety issues, the Cheshire PD urges you to contact the Department at (203) 271-5500 and speak to an officer.

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