Covid-19 restrictions, closure of gyms and the fine weather over the last few months, have caused many of us to dust off our trainers and gym shorts and get out and about on local roads for our recommended daily exercise.
It has been reported that 858,000 of us have downloaded the NHS Couch to 5k app since the end of March, meaning that thousands of novice runners as well as cyclists have taken to British roads.
In the early days of lockdown our roads were pretty much deserted but with restrictions now gradually being lifted, significant numbers of motorists are now back on the roads. Inevitably this will result in an increase in the number of road traffic accidents, especially when many of us are not experienced road runners or savvy with the rules of the road.
Top tips for runners and walkers to stay safe
There are a number of actions runners can take to help stay safe whilst running outdoors:
- Wear high visibility or bright clothing so that you can be seen easily
- In poor visibility or at night wear a head torch
- Let someone know where you plan to go and how long you expect to be out
- Don’t wear headphones
- If running or walking on the road run or walk against the traffic so you can see vehicles approaching
- Look both ways before crossing roads or traffic
- Carry ID and emergency contact number attached to the back of your phone
Top tips for Cyclists to stay safe
- Always wear a cycle helmet
- Make sure your bike is in a good, roadworthy condition
- Always signal and indicate your intended manoeuvre even if you believe there is no traffic behind you
- Always obey traffic lights and signs
What to do if you are involved in a road traffic accident while out running, walking or cycling.
If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a road traffic accident whilst out if possible you should:
- Make sure that you are safe from other traffic and out of harm’s way
- Take the motorists name, registration and contact details
- Take names and contact details of any witnesses
- Take photographs of the accident location
- Report the accident to the local Police
- If you are injured visit your GP or A&E
- Contact a specialist road traffic accident Solicitor for advice