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Keeping pedestrians and drivers safe on the roads of Hawaii

A pedestrian is in critical condition after being hit by a car recently in Honolulu. The victim was crossing the Kamehameha Highway at approximately 2:00 a.m. on June 23rd when he was hit by the vehicle.

Although the victim was crossing in the crosswalk, he did not have the right of way. Speed and alcohol do not appear to be factors in the accident.

Pedestrian deaths in Hawaii have spiked in recent years. Fourteen pedestrians have been killed in Hawaii in just the first 90 days of 2018. Nine of them were simply crossing the street.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation recently launched an initiative to raise awareness in communities. Messages with startling statistics about traffic injuries and deaths will appear on message boards throughout the state.

At some point in the day, most individuals are either a pedestrian or a driver. While the state does its part to decrease pedestrian injuries and deaths, what can you do while driving or walking?

Abide by the rules

Many accidents occur when either the driver or pedestrian is not obeying the rules of the road. The rules are there for a reason - and when you don’t obey them, you are asking for trouble.

Drivers don’t expect a pedestrian to cross the street when they are midway down the block – that’s what crosswalks are for. And pedestrians don’t expect drivers to make a right hand turn on a red light when there is a “No Turn on Red” sign clearly visible.

Dont get distracted whether driving or walking

We hear about distracted driving frequently, but how many times do you see pedestrians walking with their heads down while they check email on their phone? Stay alert, whether you are driving or walking.

Be visible when walking

During the day, be especially careful during morning and evening hours, when the sun can temporary blind a driver. If you plan on being out and about on foot in the evening hours, wear reflective clothing or carry a flashlight.

Be visible when driving

This is especially important during foggy and rainy days. Make sure your headlights and/or fog lights are turned on, and keep your windshield wipers in good working condition.

Walk safely

Walk on the sidewalk whenever possible. If there isn’t a sidewalk, walk as close to the curb as you can while facing traffic.

Slow it down

Always drive the posted speed limit, and slow down when you are in residential areas, school zones, or when approaching a crosswalk.

Hawaii is a beautiful place with weather that lends itself perfectly to a daily walk. When you obey the rules of the road, whether as a driver or a pedestrian, you will be helping to make Hawaii a safer place as well.

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