Boston is known for a lot of things: our famous sports teams, the unpredictable weather, dropping the ‘r’ … and of course our driving. While we’re not proud of our terrible reputation as drivers, it is something we are working to improve with the goal of increasing safety for everyone on the road, including drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians. No matter how you get around the city — these safety tips can help improve traffic safety for everyone.
- Before crossing traffic, make eye contact with drivers.
- Wear bright or reflective clothing if walking or running at night.
Cross Streets Safely
- Cross streets at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks when available.
- 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.
- Watch for cars turning onto streets, even if you have the right of way.
- Use particular caution when crossing driveways and alley entrances. Drivers may not expect you to be there or see you.
- Avoid using your phone while crossing streets. If you walk into traffic with your head down, your reaction time will be delayed.
Watch for Pedestrians
- Always yield to pedestrians in crosswalks — wait for them to return to the sidewalk before continuing.
- Pass pedestrians with care by announcing “on your left” or “passing on your left” or by using a bell.
- Use hand signals to indicate change of lanes or turns.
Travel with the Flow of Traffic
- Remember that you have just as much a right to be on the road as a driver.
- If there is a bike lane, use it, otherwise you are entitled to an entire lane of traffic.
- As a slower mode of transportation, it is safer to remain to the right of traffic, unless making a left hand turn.
Ensure Your Safety
- Don’t text, listen to music or do anything else that could distract you by taking your eyes, ears, and mind off the road and traffic.
- Wear a helmet.
- In Massachusetts, you are required to have reflectors on the front and back of your bike to be seen at night.
- Watch for pedestrians and bicyclists at all times.
- Yield to pedestrians when making turns.
- At red lights, come to a complete stop and look for bicyclists before making a ‘right on red’ turn.
Share the Road
- Move over for bicyclists and only pass when it’s safe to do so.
- Obey the speed limit and allow for reaction time.
- Limit Distractions
- Avoid talking on the phone and do not text while driving.
- Enjoy your coffee or snack once you have arrived at your destination.
Whether you get around town on two wheels, four wheels, or two legs — we all have to follow the rules of the road. Pay attention and be alert to ensure everyone’s safety. Here at Lighthouse Insurance, we understand Bostonians are proud of their city, so let’s also make our safe roads another reason to love this place. If you have questions about traffic safety or your auto policy, a Lighthouse Insurance agent is happy to help — visit our website or give us a call 617-464-3777.